Idaho Supreme Court halts jury trials due to COVID

By Melissa Davlin, Idaho Reports

Jury trials in Idaho are halted until at least January 4, 2021.

On Monday, the Idaho Supreme Court issued an order pausing both civil and criminal trials due to the substantial rise in COVID-19 cases statewide. The order, signed by Chief Justice Roger Burdick, said those cases have caused disruptions to jury trials in 95 percent of Idaho’s counties.

Citing metrics in a September order that resumed jury trials based upon COVID-19 incidence rates, Burdick wrote that just 5 percent of counties had sufficiently low incidence rates to hold jury trials on Nov. 6.

“The number of cancellations of jury trials on a weekly basis is now creating significant interruptions in court business, as well as challenges and hardships for
all jury trial participants,” the order says.

The order does not affect existing pretrial deadlines, and encourages alternative dispute resolution procedures.

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