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Maryland courts return to full operations, face backlog

BALTIMORE — Jurors are returning to Maryland’s courtrooms. And judges are starting to address the backlog of felony cases that have piled up during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Baltimore Sun reported Tuesday that jurors are coming back this week for the first time in five months.

The state’s courts have opened and closed intermittently since the virus broke out more than a year ago. Mayland Court of Appeals Chief Judge Mary Ellen Barbera issued an order that allows jury trials to resume after halting them in November because of rising coronavirus cases.

Barbera told prospective jurors in a video posted online that there were zero instances of the virus being spread when the state’s courts held 88 jury trials between October and November.

“Those called for jury service can be assured that we will continue to safeguard, as much as we reasonably can, the health of the public including jurors,” the chief judge said.

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