Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - As Alaska’s court system is reopening the criminal justice system faces a growing backlog of cases.
According to Anchorage Daily News, when the pandemic began, the Alaska Supreme Court issued sweeping orders, moving proceedings online, canceling jury trials and suspending the court rule that guarantees defendants’ right to a speedy trial.
Only a few trials have been held around the state over the past year.
Fifteen months later, pandemic conditions have improved and jury trials are reopening around the state.
Supreme Court Chief Justice Joel Bolger says it’s true that cases haven’t been moving through the system quickly, but he has reason to believe that will change, saying that People, when they’re faced with the prospect of trial, take a more realistic view of their case and are more open to resolving the case
Opening arguments in a felony criminal trial are happening live in an Anchorage courtroom on Monday, for the first time in more than a year.