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Judiciary Considers Legislation to Alter Speedy Trial Statute

Lawrence J. Zimmerman

The state Supreme Court’s chief justice says the question is whether the courts need legislative help to reconcile health and safety guidelines for juries with pent-up speedy trial demands that have been tolled since March

By R. Robin McDonald | September 23, 2020

The Judicial Council of Georgia is planning to propose legislation next year that could alter the state’s speedy trial statute, the Supreme Court of Georgia’s chief justice said.
Possible changes to the statute would likely be included as part of a broader proposal authorizing theextension of judicial emergency orders beyond the governor’s declared emergencies, said Chief JusticeHarold Melton.

The legislation is needed to address a growing backlog of unresolved cases since March when all but essential court operations, including grand juries and jury trials, were suspended as COVID-19 began spreading through Georgia, the chief justice said.

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