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Alaska jury trial suspension due to virus creates backlog

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The suspension of Alaska’s felony jury trials for more than six months has created a backlog of cases and left some residents in limbo awaiting court dates. Alaska Public Media reported misdemeanor trials are set to resume in November, but there is no schedule for resuming felony trials with larger juries and less room for social distancing. Alaska’s court officials say they are trying to balance a responsibility to public health versus an obligation to timely resolutions for defendants and victims. Anchorage District Attorney Brittany Dunlop says the hold has created a massive backlog and clearing cases may require more plea agreements.

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