Gov. Gavin Newsom issued an order Friday givin California Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye broad powers, including the right to suspend laws during the DTMNBN (Disease That Must Not Be Named) crises.
The courts will start using remote courtrooms during the health crises. This will be used to try to alleviate some of the overcrowding in the jail system.
The prisoners will be able to appear via camera from the jailhouse to the courtroom .
This will cut down on possible exposure that inmates and court officials can eliminate. This is common practice throughout the country under normal circumstances.
It saves transporting the prisoners back and forth from the jails to the courtrooms.
The laws that the chief justice now has the right to suspend, all have to do with the legal system to make sure cases can be adjudicated in a timely manner so as to not interfere with a suspect’s rights.
Cantil-Sakauye said she assured Newsom that the new powers would be assumed “with utmost care and judiciousness.”
She stressed they were temporary and needed to ensure “the justice system will be available to those most in need.”
“The keyword here for all of us is temporary,” said Cantil-Sakauye, who was appointed by former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.
The Judicial Council on Saturday also approved the extension of legal deadlines.
Certain inmates normally have the right to be released if a hearing isn’t held within 10 days. That will be extended to 30 days. Defendants charged with a felony normally must be taken before a judge in 48 hours. The new deadline is seven court days.
With courts largely shut down, 1st Amendment groups have expressed concern that the public will be denied access to documents and proceedings conducted by telephone.
Steven is a syndicated columnist for DavidJHarrisJr.com, The Range and other news websites. He is also an author, whose books can be found on Amazon.com. All enjoy a 5 star rating. They are A Walk Through the Willows, Melissa’s Song, The Tangled Web, Innocent, The Calculating Corpse and It’s All About me.