FACDL Urges Courts to Return to Virtual Court for Non-essential Hearings.

The Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers urges all courts throughout the state to return to virtual court for non-essential hearings. The use of Zoom can be both more efficient and frankly safer. “We are extremely concerned about the uptick in positive coronavirus cases throughout the State. FACDL is concerned that if proactive steps are not taken now, more severe measures will be required in the future and will result in further significant adverse due process implications.” said Jude M. Faccidomo, President of the group. By returning to Zoom proceedings on all matters that do not constitutionally require in-person appearances, the court limits the personnel in the respective courthouses, which is safer for everyone. Faccidomo is also concerned about the levels of infection in pretrial correctional facilities. “It is nearly impossible to control infection rates in a jail when there is no mandate that employees be vaccinated, and new inmates arrive daily,” Faccidomo explained. “The holding of hearings by Zoom from the jail rather than transporting hundreds of inmates daily also makes better sense for the safety of all,” he said.

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