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COVID 19 Criminal Court Update

Sacramento Valley as of 3/26/20

With the current COVID-19 situation, there is a lot of uncertainty with the courts and the criminal justice system as a whole.Chastaine Jones Criminal Defense Attorneys is doing everything we can to stay on top of the situation to keep everyone informed. Be aware that the situation is changing on a daily basis. For up-to-the-minute information, you can call our office to answer any questions specific to your case. We are open and available during normal office hours, 9:00am to 5:00pm. We will do our best to keep updating this blog as things change.

Timeline for Important Events Regarding COVID-19

  • On March 4, 2020, Governor Newsom declared a state of emergency in California.
  • On March 13, 2020, President Trump declared a national emergency.
  • On March 17, 2020, Sacramento County Presiding Judge Hom issued an Emergency Relief order, basically closing all courts except for certain hearings from March 18, 2020 to April 16, 2020. For the most part, any case involving out-of-custody persons are being continued into May. Further, this order extended time periods to conduct preliminary hearings and other matters for at least 15 days.
  • On March 18, 2020, the Eastern District of California issued an order closing the courthouse to the public. Further, the order allows the court to continue any matters to a date after May 1, 2020.
  • Also, on March 18, 2020, El Dorado County issued an order that expands the deadlines of various hearings. Cases are also being continued past the middle of April.
  • On March 19, 2020, Governor Newsom issued Executive Order N-33-20, requiring all Californians to stay home, subject to certain limited exemptions.
  • March 20, 2020, Placer county issued an order to “reduce to critical minimum functions.” As of this writing, Placer County is still having court appearances but has reduced the number of courtrooms. They are also experiencing significant delays.
  • On March 23, 2020, Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauk issued an order suspending all jury trials for 60 days. What this means is that anyone who had a jury trial set in the next few weeks will have the case continued to the end of May.
  • In Placer county, cases involving out-of-custody persons, are being continued into May or June. If you have a court date set in the next two weeks, check with your attorney to verify whether you need to appear or whether the case is going to be continued without your having to appear. Until you hear otherwise, plan on going to court and expect delays.
  • In Sacramento County, most cases are being continued without a next date being set. We are being told that they will let us know when the next court appearance is scheduled. This is causing much confusion and uncertainty for both the accused as well as the prosecution, but we will do our best to keep you informed as soon as we hear anything.

We are here to help you through these tough times and will keep you informed on the changing situation. We are reaching out to our clients regularly regarding changes that specifically impact them.

Please contact us if you have any questions or concerns. We can be reached at 916-932-7150.

Mike Chastaine Jones Criminal Defense Attorneys

Attorney at Law

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