Thursday, April 30, 2020
Adds 30 Days to Existing 60-Day Emergency Entension
By a MetNews Staff Writer
California Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye yesterday issued an order further extending deadlines for superior courts to hold criminal trials, adding a 30-day extension, bringing the delay during the COVID-19 pandemic to a total of 90 days.
“The continuous operation of our courts is essential for our constitutional form of government, and for providing due process and protecting the public. However, courts are clearly places of high risk during this pandemic.”
She initially extended criminal trial deadlines statewide and suspended jury trials in a March 23 order.
Holding of trials earlier than permitted, she said, is encouraged if it can be done safely. Pointing to possible “use of remote technology.”
The chief justice said yesterday:
I find good cause to order:
1. The 60-day continuance of criminal jury trials and the 60-day extension of time in which to conduct a criminal trial under Penal Code section 1382, both of which I first authorized in my order of March 23, 2020, are to be extended an additional 30 days. The total extension of 90 days shall be calculated from the last date on which the trial initially could have been conducted under Penal Code section 1382, as illustrated below.
2. This extension applies only to those matters for which the last date on which the trial could be conducted under Penal Code section 1382 occurred or will occur between March 16, 2020, and June 15, 2020. This will result in a range of trial dates as follows: A criminal trial for which March 16, 2020, is the last day a trial could be conducted under Penal Code section 1382 would be extended to June 14, 2020, and a criminal trial for which June 15, 2020, is the last day a trial could be conducted under Penal Code section 1382 would be extended until September 13, 2020.
3. Any previously issued extensions of time in which to conduct a criminal trial under Penal Code section 1382 that I authorized in an emergency order or orders issued to an individual court pursuant to Government Code section 68115(a)(10) shall run concurrently with the extension authorized in this paragraph, such that the total authorized extension of the section 1382 deadline in a case is 90 days.
4. Courts are strongly encouraged to collaborate with local justice partners to conduct a trial at an earlier date, if a court may do so in compliance with applicable health and safety laws, regulations, and orders, including through the use of remote technology, when appropriate.
5. To the extent a court needs a further extension of time in which to conduct criminal trials, it shall submit a request under Government Code section 68115 and describe the specific facts supporting the request, and specifically address the efforts the court is making to avoid the necessity of further extensions, including collaboration with justice partners and use of available technology.
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