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Limits on in-person court activity extended for 45 days

The statewide order extends current limitations through March 15.
The Diana E. Murphy United States Courthouse in downtown Minneapolis

The Diana E. Murphy United States Courthouse in downtown Minneapolis

Minnesota Supreme Court Chief Justice Lorie S. Gildea has issued a statewide order extending the current limitations on in-person court meetings through March. 

As a result, no new criminal or civil jury trials can begin before March 15 due to ongoing concerns about COVID-19.

For criminal jury trials, the chief judge does have the option to grant an exception if three criteria are met: the defendant has requested a speedy trial, the defendant is in custody, and the case regards a felony or non-felony person crime. 

The chief judge, with consultation with the Gildea, can also grant exceptions for in-person civil jury trials. Civil jury trials may also take place remotely if all parties and the judge agree to it. 

Among the high-profile trials due to start before Mar. 15 is that of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer accused of the murder of George Floyd.

This week, a Hennepin County judge rejected a bid to delay Chauvin's trial, saying it will go ahead on Mar. 8 as planned.

More information about the limits can be found on the Minnesota Judicial Branch website.

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