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Caddo District judges temporarily suspend criminal trials, hearings


SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) –Caddo Parish district judges Monday issued a court order in response to the spread of the coronavirus.

The order continued all criminal trials, hearings and court appearances to be reset by order when the threat subsides.

Exceptions include first appearances, bond hearings, protective order hearings, arraignments for incarcerated people, which will be conducted by video when possible, and probation revocation hearings when the defendant is in custody.

Though prospective jurors were not released, over the weekend, a post on the Caddo Clerk of Court’s website told prospective jurors to not report to the courthouse this morning, but to call the dedicated jury line after 6 p.m. today for updated instructions.

Caddo Clerk of Court Mike Spence said the post was made in deference to Louisiana’s directives to not have gatherings involving more than 50 people.

In addition, to the criminal restrictions, all civil and domestic trials, hearings and court appearances were temporarily suspended, to be continued and reset at a later date.

The Court also issued general orders that prohibit the following people from visiting the courthouse:

  • Persons who have traveled any of the following countries or regions within the last 14 days: China, South Korea, Japan, Italy and Iran, along with the following states: Washington, California and New York. (This list may be updated as further guidance is received)
  • Persons who reside or have had close contact with someone who has traveled to one of the prohibited countries or regions listed above within the last 14 days;
  • Persons who have been asked to self-quarantine by any doctor, hospital or health agency;
  • Persons who have been diagnosed with, or have had contact with, anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19
  • Persons exhibiting symptoms unusual that are among the CDC-identified symptoms (these have been identified as fever, cough, sore throat or shortness of breath).

Anyone with a scheduled hearing or have other business inside the courthouse and are unable to enter because of the above restrictions should contact the Caddo Clerk of Court at (318) 226-6785 for civil matters, or (318) 226-6786 for criminal matters. People who are represented by an attorney, should contact that attorney.

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