OAKLAND (CBS SF) — Alameda County Superior Court officials shut down operations Wednesday, closing courthouses to the public through April 7 because of an order issued by health officials for people to shelter in place to try to reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus.
Court officials said California Supreme Court Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye on Tuesday granted their request for an emergency order that
gives them broad authority to take various actions needed to implement the court closure.
However, Alameda County Superior Court Executive Officer Chad Finke said in an email Wednesday that the court was in discussions with the county’s Public Defender, District Attorney and sheriff’s offices to continue to conduct arraignments in court periodically.
Finke said court officials were working on a plan to conduct an arraignment calendar this Friday and two days per week after that, although those plans are subject to change. He said there’s no plan for video arraignments at Santa Rita Jail in Dublin this time.
District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Teresa Drenick said prosecutors in her office were still reviewing cases and making charging decisions.
Court officials said the days between March 17 and April 3 will be considered court holidays, per the code of civil procedure. They said
documents won’t be received during that period and the court’s fax filing system will be temporarily suspended.
However, court officials said they recognize the urgency of certain filing types so they will continue to accept requests for temporary
restraining orders and applications for relief in family law and probate matters, via drop box only.
The Rene C. Davidson Courthouse at 12th and Oak streets in Oakland will accept temporary restraining order requests and probate applications.
The Hayward Hall of Justice at 24404 Amador St. in Hayward will accept TRO requests and emergency family law applications.
The court added that on Monday, it ordered the stay of all evictions pending between March 17 through April 8 because the clerk’s office
won’t be open to process unlawful detainer requests.