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In face of COVID infections, new practices coming to Lucas Co. Common Pleas Court

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Published: Nov. 13, 2020 at 10:10 AM EST
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - With cases of COVID-19 rising in Ohio, changes are coming to the Lucas County Common Pleas Court, beginning Monday.

In an email sent Thursday by Judge Dean Mandros, multiple people at Toledo Municipal Court have been infected by COVID-19 or are currently quarantining, putting the functioning of the court at risk.

“I intend to take all necessary steps to prevent that from happening to this courthouse,” Judge Mandros said in the email. “We are reaching an inflexion point.”

Judge Mandros said jurors will not be summoned for purposes of trial without the prior approval of the administrative judge, which will not be authorized unless exceptional circumstances exist.

Also, no defendants will be brought into the courtroom without the prior approval of the administrative judge. Defendants will interact with the court by way of Zoom conducted from a first-floor office.

Judge Mandros said in-custody defendants will be requested to appear in the court in person in rare circumstances, such as a plea or sentencing in a homicide case. Out-of-custody defendants will rarely be called into the courthouse, and when they are, will be directed to the Zoom office.

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