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Court of Appeals holds conference by phone, like the rest of us

Judicial robes provide no protection against a pandemic’s potential peril.

Thus, Maryland’s top court held its monthly private conference Thursday not on the fourth floor of its courthouse building in Annapolis – as is the Court of Appeals’ custom – but by telephone as the seven judges practiced social distancing to stem the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

“The Maryland Judiciary is using remote technology to meet some of the challenges posed by the COVID-19 emergency,” Court of Appeals Chief Judge Mary Ellen Barbera said in a statement Thursday afternoon.

“Although remote technology has been utilized for some proceedings throughout Maryland for years, the emergency has prompted expanded use on an expedited basis,” Barbera added. “The Court of Appeals has utilized remote technology as necessary to conduct the court’s conferences in the past. Though we, the members of the court, would prefer to meet in person, we are fortunate to have the capacity to meet remotely during the COVID-19 emergency.”

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