District Court in Sheridan Will Transition to In-Person Hearings

A virtual COVID protocol hearing was held Thursday in Fourth Judicial District Court in Sheridan. Sheridan Media’s Ron Richter has the details.

In-Person Hearings

A number of attorneys from the Public Defender’s Office and the Sheridan County Attorney’s Office took part in the hearing that also included Sheridan County Health Officer Dr. Ian Hunter. Fourth Judicial District Court Judge John Fenn presented a number of questions to Dr. Hunter in regard to COVID-19 protocol in relation to transitioning to in-person hearings again in District Court. Dr. Hunter, when asked by Judge Fenn about wearing masks in the courtroom, said masks shouldn’t be necessary if adequate social distancing can be achieved.

Dr. Hunter, when asked about jury trial protocol, recommended that the Court continue to break the jury selection process up into two groups, with half in the morning and the other half in the afternoon. There have been several jury trials held in District Court in Sheridan during the pandemic where that protocol was put into place to limit the number of people in the courtroom at a given time. Judge Fenn said the Court will most likely not impose any kind of a mask mandate, but would encourage mask use during in-person hearings. Judge Fenn said he would soon be issuing a memo to the Wyoming State Bar detailing the plan to resume in-person court proceedings in District Court on May 3.

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