County court system making efforts to stay moving while practicing social distancing.

Published: Apr. 13, 2020 at 6:00 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

The coronavirus pandemic has caused many places to change up how they operate, which includes the court system.

Aside from having more people work from home, courts have also begun using programs such as Zoom, Skype and FaceTime.

"The Warren County regional jail has done a phenomenal job as well as the court system making sure that all of our attorneys have access to meet with defendants that are held in custody," said Chris Cohron, the Warren County Commonwealth's Attorney.

Programs like Skype and Zoom have allowed the court system to keep moving while also practicing social distance and safety protocols.

"We have continued our in custody hearings in our criminal justice system," Cohron said.

With "virtual court" now in session, attorneys can still meet with their clients only now without having in-person communication.

"Most importantly, we're still having our dockets being held via Skype, and via FaceTime," Cohron said. "Different options to make sure that the criminal justice system is still moving forward."

Cohron says the biggest challenge the justice system is facing is having court cases proceed in a timely manner.

"We don't want to see individuals that have been victimized in cases further victimized," Cohron said. "We're trying to make sure that those cases will proceed as timely as possible."

Cohron said he thinks many of the electronic options being used during the coronavirus pandemic will continue to see use after the conclusion of the crisis. The electronic options can help cut down on the cost of transporting people for live hearings.

"Prosecutors for a long time have pushed for hearings with out of county inmates and Department of Corrections inmates to be done via Skype," Cohron said.