PANDEMIC POLICIES

The following plan was designed to balance the need to reduce the amount of people coming into the Forsyth County Hall of Justice and the desire to resume operations of courthouse functions.  The current pandemic is constantly evolving so this plan is subject to change at any time if modifications are deemed necessary to maintain public health and the effective administration of justice.

COURTROOM 1A – TRAFFIC COURT

Unrepresented defendants will be summoned to court to be advised. If an attorney files a general appearance on behalf of a client, the ADA will give the attorney a continuance date and the defendant does not have to come to Court.

The District Attorney’s Office will prepare a daily trial order of 12 cases. The cases that will be selected for the trial order will be chosen based on case age.  The pending DWIs with the oldest dates of offense will be set on the trial list first. These cases will be scheduled for pre-determined times. If there is a motion for a continuance, that cannot be agreed upon by both parties, (for one of these 12 cases that are set on the trial priority list) the motion to continue must be heard in advance by the presiding judge.  The request for a continuance from the trial priority list can be submitted to the presiding judge via email with a copy to all parties, by scheduling a WebEx hearing or in chambers. Attorneys are encouraged to communicate with the prosecutor in advance of the court date so that any contested motions can be heard in a timely manner.

Pleas for any case that appears on the docket can be scheduled in coordination with the prosecutor; time slots are encouraged in order to control the amount of people in the courtroom and to avoid interference with trials. Pleas can be handled in person or via WebEx.  Speak to the assigned prosecutor for details.

A represented defendant does not need to be in court on their court date unless:

  1. The case is on the trial schedule.
  2. Defense counsel and the prosecutor have scheduled the case for an in-person disposition.

DWI discovery will be made available; please contact VWLA Arielle Lindley: Arielle Lindley

COURTROOM 1C – CRIMINAL COURT

Unrepresented defendants will be summoned to court to be advised. If an attorney files a general appearance on behalf of a client, the ADA will give the attorney a continuance date and the defendant does not have to come to Court.

Probation Violation hearings will be scheduled to be heard on Mondays, and certain Tuesdays in Courtroom 1C. There will be a group of 30 defendants summoned to address their pending probation violations in the morning session of court and a second group will be summoned to report at 2:00 pm. The purpose of these two dockets is to minimize the amount of people coming into the building. A list of probationers that are being called for hearing on probation violation days will be published on this website.  Any defendant listed on a probation violation is required to come to court.

The State also intends to publish trial lists. The cases will be prioritized by case age and will also seek to consolidate cases by charging officer or LPO in order to reduce the amount of people in the courtrooms. If there is a motion for a continuance, that cannot be agreed upon by both parties, (for one of these cases that are set on the trial priority list) the motion to continue must be heard in advance by the presiding judge.  The request for a continuance from the trial priority list can be submitted to the presiding judge via email with a copy to all parties, by scheduling a WebEx hearing or in chambers. Attorneys are encouraged to communicate with the prosecutor in advance of the court date so that any contested motions can be heard in a timely manner.

A represented defendant does not need to be in court on their court date unless the defense counsel and the prosecutor have scheduled the case for an in-person disposition, or the defendant is listed on a probation violation docket or on a 1C trial list.

Any defendant that is being held in custody for a 1C case can be scheduled for trial. If your client is held in custody and you would like a trial, please contact ADA Lizmar Bosques and a trial date will be scheduled. Lizmar.Bosques@nccourts.org

Deferred Prosecution cases that are in full compliance can be reviewed and dismissed off docket. Please reach out to ADA Kevin Olsen. Kevin.R.Olsen@nccourts.org

Conditional Discharge cases that are in full compliance can be reviewed and submitted for the court’s review off docket. Please reach out to ADA Eboni Thompson.  Eboni.N.Thompson@nccourts.org

Subject to staffing limitations, the District Attorney’s Office will provide discovery for Class A1 and Class 1 misdemeanors upon request.  Contact the prosecutor assigned to make a request.  Email requests are preferred and encouraged.

If you have a matter that you would like to move up for resolution you can contact the assigned prosecutor to add the off-docket matter to the 1C docket. A schedule with prosecutor assignments can be found HERE.

COURTROOM 3A – PRELIMINARY COURT THURSDAYS AND FRIDAYS

Unrepresented defendants will be summoned to court to be advised. If an attorney files a general appearance on behalf of a client, the ADA will give the attorney a continuance date and the defendant does not have to come to Court.

A represented defendant does not need to be in court on their court date unless the defense counsel and the prosecutor have scheduled the case for an in-person disposition.  Or unless the prosecutor has made a plea offer and the defense attorney is unable to advise whether their client wishes to accept the plea offer.

If the prosecutor has made a plea offer and the defense attorney wishes to accept that offer, the case will be scheduled at a predetermined time.  Contact the ADA.

COURTROOM 3C – DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

Unrepresented defendants will be summoned to court to be advised. If an attorney files a general appearance on behalf of a client, the ADA will give the attorney a continuance date and the defendant does not have to come to Court.

Victims and witnesses are only required to be in court if their case is listed on the TRIAL LIST.

Advisements and any pleas will begin at 9:30 am. If a case is on the trial docket but is actually for plea, an attorney may contact the ADA before the day of court and arrange to come in at 9:30 for that plea instead of the later trial time, if desired.

The District Attorney’s Office will prepare a reduced trial docket for Courtroom 3C. The cases that will be selected for the docket are cases that were previously scheduled for the court date with priority given to defendants that are in custody as well as cases based on case age.  The pending cases with the oldest dates of offense will be placed on the docket first and the rest of the matters previously scheduled will be given a continuance date.

In order to maintain safe social distancing and avoid larger groups of people waiting for trials in the lobby, the trial docket is greatly reduced. To reduce further the wait time in the lobby, the District Attorney’s Office will also schedule trials, in order of age and jail status, at set times throughout the day.  Please review the TRIAL LIST for Courtroom 3C to find the time for your case.  A small group of cases will be set at each time slot.  You do not need to appear before your time slot.  The ADA will do their best to handle your case during the assigned time slot, although as trial length is unpredictable, some flexibility may be required.

If there is a motion for a continuance, that cannot be agreed upon by both parties for one of these cases that are set on the trial priority list, the motion to continue must be heard in advance by the presiding judge.  The request for a continuance from the priority list can be submitted to the presiding judge via email with a copy to all parties, by scheduling a WebEx hearing or in chambers. Attorneys are encouraged to communicate with the prosecutor in advance of the court date so that any contested motions can be heard in a timely manner.

Discovery for DV cases is available for review at the District Attorney’s Office. Contact the DV Unit legal assistants to set up a time to view your discovery.

DV Victim Witness Legal Assistants

  • Isabel Segura – Maria.I.Segura@nccourts.org
  • Kim Nichols – Kimberly.L.Nichols@nccourts.org
  • Janet Greene – Janet.C.Greene@nccourts.org

KERNERSVILLE COURT

Kernersville Court will operate under the same parameters as Courtroom 1A. Unrepresented defendants will be summoned to court to be advised. If an attorney files a general appearance on behalf of a client, the ADA will give the attorney a continuance date and the defendant does not have to come to Court.

Pleas for any case that appears on the docket can be scheduled in coordination with the prosecutor; time slots are encouraged to control the amount of people in the courtroom. Pleas can be handled in person.  Speak to the assigned prosecutor for details.

DWI discovery will be made available; please contact VWLA Arielle Lindley: Arielle.E.Lindley@nccourts.org.

Any defendant that is being held in custody for a KV case can be scheduled for trial or for guilty plea. If your client is held in custody and you would like a trial or would like to enter a guilty plea, please contact ADA Lizmar Bosques and a trial date or a plea date will be scheduled in Courtroom 1C. Lizmar.Bosques@nccourts.org.

INFRACTIONS COURT – COURTROOM 1B

Infractions Court brings an extremely large number of individuals into the Forsyth County Hall of Justice most days of the week.  Due to the health concerns caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, reopening this courtroom to the public would be a public safety risk.  Currently, the courtroom is open from Monday – Thursday, 8:00 am to 2:00 pm. If you have a traffic ticket pending you have four options:

  1. You can hire an attorney to handle the ticket for you.
  2. You can submit a request for a reduction or a compliance dismissal online.  This service is not available for all infractions.  Click HERE for more information on which infractions may be eligible.  To see your online options by citation number or name, please click HERE.
  3. If you do not hire an attorney or submit an online request, your case will automatically be continued to a new date.  There are no failures to appear being issued during this uncertain time.
  4. If you would like to handle your ticket you are welcome to come on your court date to have your case heard.  Keep in mind that you may be asked to wait outside while other matters are heard in the 1B area in order to keep numbers limited within the building. You are also required to have a mask at all times and will be asked to keep your social distance from others waiting to be heard.  You can check your court date online HERE.