1/2/19 Downtown Lafayette Stock Images, Tippecanoe County Court House

Indiana Chief Justice Loretta Rush ordered this week Indiana courts to suspend in-person jury trials during the current pandemic emergency.

In the order filed Monday, the court says, "The threat of exposure from any in-court proceeding during these conditions, even when conducted under strict protocols, is high. And any exposures from such proceedings contribute to prolonging the emergency. So while the charge to carry on our full system of justice is clear and strong, we must all do our part, where and how we can, to slow the spread. We must take drastic measures we hoped would not be necessary."

Individual state courts have been granted specific pandemic-related rules since spring. In Tippecanoe County, for instance, jury pools were questioned using the large Long Theater downtown, and some depositions and court hearings have been conducted virtually.

The latest order stipulates that trials will be rescheduled based on early-trial motions and congested court calendars.

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