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AMENDED NOTICE TO ALL ATTORNEYS PRACTICING CRIMINAL LAW April 9, 2020

10 Apr 2020 8:39 AM | Amanda Kohlman (Administrator)

KANSAS DISTRICT COURT

AMENDED NOTICE TO ALL ATTORNEYS PRACTICING CRIMINAL LAW

April 9, 2020


Chambers of

Shawnee County Courthouse

Officers:

NANCY E. PARRISH

Division Fourteen

NORMA DUNNAWAY

District Judge

Topeka, Kansas   66603-3922

Administrative Assistant

(785)  251-6290

MIRANDA CUMMINGS

Fax   (785)   251-4917

Official Court Reporter

AMENDED NOTICE TO ALL ATTORNEYS PRACTICING CRIMINAL LAW

April 9, 2020

Due to the outbreak of COVID 19 and the Kansas Supreme Court’s emergency order issued on March 18, 2020 (2020PR16) restricting operations to critical functions in the District Court and the Supreme Court Order Amending 2020PR16 (2020PR32), the 3rd Judicial District Criminal Department has established the following:

  • 1.                  All criminal jury trials are continued until further notice but in any event will not begin prior to June 1, 2020.
  • 2.                  Essential functions of the court shall include: first appearances; determination of probable cause; issuing warrants; setting appearance bonds; conducting inquisitions and any other matters that require expeditious hearing.
  • 3.                  Hearings set during this time of restricted operations will be continued generally until further notice unless a video conference is scheduled.

Pursuant to the Supreme Court Administrative Order 2020 PR 32, nonessential functions may be performed in a manner consistent with the Supreme Court Order as local resources and circumstances allow.  No hearing related to a nonessential function may be conducted except by two-way telephonic or electronic audio-visual communication.

Audio-visual conference hearings via Zoom will be scheduled for the following types of hearings for defendants who are in the Shawnee County Correctional Facility: pleas, sentencings with PSI’s which don’t require victims or witnesses, show causes that do not require witnesses, and bond issues.  If the defendant requests release from custody, defense counsel should verify the defendant’s proposed housing, employment, etc.  The schedule for hearings will be:

Mondays - Divisions 9 and 11

Wednesdays - Divisions 1 and 13

Fridays – Divisions 12 and 14

Tuesdays – Division 7 (Misdemeanor hearings) 

In order to provide time for all participants to be ready for the hearings by downloading the Zoom App as well as other preparations for the hearing, the majority of the hearings won’t begin until the week of April 20th.  However, there may be some hearings scheduled by individual divisions prior to that date in order to provide some test runs or if there are urgent issues.

Defense counsel will be allotted 15 minutes prior to the beginning of the hearing to talk with their client.  If more time is needed, the defense counsel should independently schedule time with their client in advance of the hearing.

Defendants will be questioned at the beginning of the audio-visual conference if they are willing to waive their personal appearance.  Counsel will need to explain to their clients prior to the hearing that they will be questioned about waiving their personal appearance (except for bond hearings).  If a defendant is not willing to waive his or her personal appearance, the hearing will need to be rescheduled until further notice since in person hearings are not currently allowed under the Supreme Court Order for nonessential functions.

  • 4.                  Counsel do not need to file Motions for Continuance for hearings that have been (or will be) cancelled due to the Supreme Court Orders.
  • 5.                  Emergency issues will be handled by the Duty Judge and/or the Backup Duty Judge.
  • 6.                  First Appearances will be heard by the Duty Judge (Judge Moylan or her designee) and the Backup Duty Judge will deal with emergency issues such as bond resets, warrant recalls, etc.  The schedule for the Backup Duty Judges through April and May is as follows:
  • April 6-10                  Judge Parrish                        Division 14
  • April 13-17               Judge Geier               Division 1
  • April 20-24               Judge Ossmann         Division 9
  • April 27-May 1         Judge Rios                 Division 11
  • May 4-8                     Judge Ebberts           Division 12
  • May 11-15                 Judge Debenham      Division 13
  • May 18-22                 Judge Parrish                        Division 14
  • May 25-29                 Judge Geier               Division 1

Modification of Bond – If the State and defense counsel agree to a modification of bond, the backup duty judge will handle the bond reset process.  If counsel do not agree, the bond issue will be referred to the assigned division.  Requests for modification of bond should be made through email.  Response to those requests should be made within 48 hours excluding weekends.  The assigned judge then will make a decision and notify counsel or set a hearing.  Bond emails, responses, and the court’s ruling will be filed by the judge so that there is a record of the arguments and the court’s decision.

  • 7.                  New cases on first appearance will be set 60 days out on either a criminal docket or CAD.
  • 8.                  The court is granting a 30 day automatic extension of all motion deadlines currently set in April and May.  If other extensions are needed, counsel should file a motion. 

*The amendments and additions to the Notice dated March 19, 2020, are underlined.

View Full Notice Here - Amended Notice to All Attorneys Practicing Criminal Law (2).pdf

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