WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) – COVID-19 concerns are impacting the nations’ court system.
Steps are being taken to protect a person’s safety and their legal rights.
Unlike some other institutions in society, like education or even business, the court system simply can’t shut down.
The wheels of justice are turning under the dome of the Luzerne County Courthouse. Although you might say they are turning in low gear, they’re still moving.
“So what we’ve done is cut back on our schedule to the point we are doing everything by phone that we can, on video. Hearings that have an individual coming into the courthouse are being spaced out where we don’t have more than ten people in a courtroom at one time,” said Luzerne County President Judge Michael Vough.
Jury trials have been pushed back until after April 14th. That reduces the number of people coming into the courthouse by about 200 a week.
“No ones legal rights are being infringed upon or compromised in any way,” Vough said.
Signs are placed on all courtroom doors. Only people are invloved in a case can enter the courtrooms. Family members cannot.
“We have a significantly less amount of people coming here in the last few days,” said Mike Shucosky, District Court Administrator.
“I think people are starting to heed the public announcements to avoid traveling in crowds to avoid unnecessary contact.”