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No jury duty as El Paso courts cancel jury trials

EL PASO, Texas -- The El Paso Council of Judges late Monday afternoon announced a halt to all jury trials in the county's district courts and suspended jury duty until further notice in an effort to help combat coronavirus.

The Council said the district court clerk's office would be operating with a skeletal staff. As of Wednesday, it would be open from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. to accept passport applications. No more than ten people at a time will be allowed in the clerk's office lobby, officials said.

Meanwhile, the El Paso Municipal Court also said there would be no jury trials on March 26 or 27. Jurors are excused from duty and do not need to appear, officials said.

Municipal Court officials announced they were canceling and rescheduling all court hearings through April 3 being held at the Overland location. It said notices would be mailed out with details on rescheduled dates.

Hearings would still continue at the Dyer facility, but video arraignment was being encouraged, and parking hearings at Overland were still taking place as scheduled.

Municipal Court said it was suspending juvenile case management, youth delinquency classes and teen court for the remainder of March and all of April. (See the court's memo below.)

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Jim Parker

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