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All Dauphin County courts, district judge offices will reopen; jury trials on hold until August


All Dauphin County courts, including district judges, will reopen to the public on Monday, June 8, with specified restrictions in place to limit spread of the coronavirus.

All jury trials remain suspended until Aug. 17, according to today’s reopening announcement from county President Judge John Cherry.

Restrictions to be in effect at all court facilities will include maintaining social distancing of a minimum of 6 feet. Masks or appropriate face coverings are to be worn at all times.

Anyone entering a court facility will have their temperature checked using an infrared digital thermometer. Anyone with a temperature of 100.4 degrees or more will not be allowed in, according to Cherry’s order.

In addition, “verbal screening” will be done of those seeking to enter a court facility to see if they have been in contact within the past two weeks with someone known to be infected with the coronavirus, or if they themselves have experienced symptoms of the virus within the past 24 hours. People known to have had contact or who are showing symptoms will not be allowed in.

Participants in a court proceeding will not be permitted to enter a court facility until 10 minutes before their assigned time.

While courts are reopening to the public, judges are being encouraged to hold proceedings by video or phone conferencing where possible, in order to limit in-person proceedings.

Otherwise, court appearances will be staggered to reduce crowding. Anyone who is not a party or a witness involved in a proceeding will not be allowed in without prior court approval.

Payment of fines, costs and restitution for county court cases may be made using the PAePay online option, certified check, money order, or by check mailed to the Bureau of Fines and Costs, 101 Market St., Harrisburg PA 17101.

In-person payments will be accepted at Dauphin County Courthouse, but access to the office will be limited to one person at a time.

Payments to district judges can be made using PAePay, NCourt, or by mailing a check or money order to the DJ office.

You will also be able to make a payment in-person at the DJ, but safety precautions will be enforced at each DJ office, according to Cherry’s order.