Jury trials in criminal, civil cases to resume in New Mexico

Coronavirus New Mexico

NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – The New Mexico Supreme Court is allowing jury trials to move forward. Courts can resume jury trials between June 15 and July 15.

“As our state gradually reopens, courts can safely resume jury trials as local conditions permit,” said Chief Justice Judith Nakamura in a press release. “Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, New Mexico courts have worked diligently to protect the health of people entering a courthouse. In resuming jury trials, our courts will rigorously follow COVID-safe practices developed by public health authorities.”

Before courts resume jury trials, the chief judge in the judicial district will need to submit plans for Supreme Court approval that describe the operating procedures and precautions implemented for courts within that district. These will include steps to protect jurors, lawyers, witnesses, and other individuals during a trial and will include precautions like six-feet social distancing and using plexiglass dividers as well as other protective barriers.

On Thursday, the Court also issued an order that will add 30 days to the payment deadline imposed by a magistrate, metropolitan, district or municipal court for fines and fees that are due between May 30 and June 30, 2020. Courts have implemented safety procedures during the COVID-19 pandemic recommended by the state Department of Health which include:

  • Anyone entering a court building is required to wear a mask or protective face covering
  • Health screenings of courthouse visitors which include temperature checks
  • Limiting the number of people in locations in a courthouse to ensure social distancing
  • Frequent cleaning and disinfecting in judicial buildings

New Mexico Coronavirus Resources

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