Chief Judge Jane E. Magnus-Stinson today issued a General Order that suspends jury trials in all divisions of the Southern District of Indiana through and including at least August 31, 2020; subject to further order of the Court, some jury trials may resume on September 1, 2020. To the extent this Order differs from previous orders of the Court on this subject, this Order supersedes and replaces those Orders.
Please read the General Order for specific details. The Court’s decision to once again suspend jury trials stems from the recent rise in COVID-19 cases across the state and within the Southern District of Indiana.
While jury trials have been suspended, the courthouses remain open and other in-person proceedings, including plea and sentencing hearings, are taking place. Certain limitations and restrictions established in previous General Orders remain in effect, such as the mandatory wearing of face coverings in all public spaces (except for individuals with medical exemptions, or those excused from wearing a face-covering in a courtroom by the presiding judge).
The screening and other requirements set forth in the General Order issued on March 20, 2020, also remain in effect, with the understanding that the screening questions may change based upon guidance by public health officials and as knowledge about the symptoms of COVID-19 develops.
The Court also continues to hold certain proceedings, such as initial appearances and detention hearings, as well as civil conferences, via video conference and telephonically.
The District Court has created a COVID-19 response page on its website that contains all orders, press releases, and other information regarding Court operations during the COVID-19 pandemic.