The Journal Gazette
Wednesday, January 19, 2022 3:06 pm

Allen Superior Court halts new jury trials until at least Feb. 14

Proceedings in progress to continue; COVID-19 infections, illnesses blamed

The Journal Gazette

Allen Superior Court said today it is halting new jury trials until at least Feb. 14 because of the latest surge in COVID-19 cases and illnesses in the community.

The pause in jury trials will begin on Monday, allowing any proceedings currently underway to be completed, the court said in a statement, which estimated that five to 10 jury trials would be affected. It said the court's Board of Judges unanimously approved the pause today.

"Superior Court is temporarily halting trials due to the dramatic increase in positive COVID-19 cases and illness among litigants, jurors, prosecutors and other staff," the statement said. "While the pause is in place, bench trials, sentencings and guilty pleas will take place as scheduled."

Judge Fran Gull, administrative judge of the court's criminal division, said: “Throughout the pandemic, we have gone to extraordinary lengths to keep the Courts moving forward. In fact, the Allen County Courts have not closed for a single day due to COVID-19. But the best thing for all involved during the current surge in cases is to pause trials until conditions improve.”

Current COVID-19 case numbers in Allen County far exceed the levels experienced when jury trials were previously halted in April and December 2020, the statement said. It said those who have received jury summonses to appear between Jan. 25 and Feb. 10 may disregard those notices.



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