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Schoolcraft court is live streaming proceedings

MANISTIQUE — The 93rd District Court, which serves Schoolcraft County, has made its court proceedings available online to increase court accessibility. The decision to live stream, which was made by District Court Judge Mark Louma, was designed to be as “user-friendly” as possible.

“I believe that court proceedings should be accessible to the public. The Sixth Amendment to the Constitution requires that in all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial,” said Judge Luoma. “While any person has the right to be present for most court hearings or trials, COVID-19 has changed the way the public can attend.”

“COVID-19 has changed our court operations several times since the pandemic started,” said Magistrate David Maddox. “From a court administration position; we have to comply with the State Court Administrators Office, county regulations, and the health department etc. The bottom line is our court room size and configuration wouldn’t allow for proper social distancing, this system allows the public to view and defendants to appear digitally for most hearings.”

“I believe that it’s essential to do our best to protect the health of everyone that is involved with the court process,” Louma added. “We will re-assess our plans moving forward, however as long as this process continues to operate as smooth as it has, we will likely continue the live steaming.”

The courts live stream web address is www/youtube.com/93rddistrictcourt

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