Socially distanced jury trials to resume Monday in Hamilton County

Socially distanced jury trials to resume Monday in Hamilton County

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - Jury trials will resume in Hamilton County Monday after the coronavirus pandemic halted them earlier this year, they won’t look the same.

An Ohio Supreme Court order suspending jury trials statewide expired last week.

Hundreds of cases on top of dozens of jury trials were delayed with many defendants waiting for their day in court since March, according to Hamilton County Common Pleas Court Judge Charles Kubicki., the court’s presiding and administrative judge.

He says the court has taken steps to keep people safe:

  • Three courtrooms have been specifically adapted for jury trials with safety measures to allow for social distancing such as plexiglass dividers for the jury. Jurors will sit 6 feet apart.
  • The prosecutor will stand behind a podium protected by plexiglass.
  • Everyone entering the courthouse also must wear a mask and have their temperature taken.

If a juror, victim or attorney has any health concerns, a trial can be delayed under state law. Kubicki has said they can stay home if they have legitimate health concerns.

Jurors have only been summoned in cases where there are assurances the trial will go forward, he said.

People are required by law to appear if they receive a jury summons.

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