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Cedar Rapids DUI and Criminal Lawyer: What you need to know during Covid-19

Masked crime scene investigator

Law enforcement is still making arrests in the Sixth Judicial District, which includes Linn, Jones, Benton, Iowa, Tama, and Johnson Counties. Some criminal cases—including Operating While Intoxicated (OWI, or, DUI, in other States)—in the entire Cedar Rapids metro area, the corridor, and Iowa City are resulting in arrests and not merely arrest “by citation,” as has previously been authorized by the Sixth Judicial District Chief Judge. Arrests are primarily being made for Operating While Intoxicated, Attempt to Elude, and any felony criminal offense.

The Iowa Supreme Court Chief Justice, Hon. Susan Larson Christensen, has urged that pretrial release options should be considered where possible.

Courts are conducting limited business, including trials already in progress, criminal cases that cannot be continued or conducted by videoconference or telephone, and emergency matters that cannot be conducted by videoconference or telephone.

Initial appearances in criminal prosecutions will be conducted by telephone or videoconference through August 3 and defendants may waive initial appearance by executing a written waiver that provides the information the defendant is entitled to receive at an in-person hearing. These waivers do not need to be “under oath” through August 3.

Through August 3, criminal defendants may waive preliminary hearings by telephone and the waiver need not be recorded or reported, so long as the court indicates in the court file that the hearing has been waived.

District court criminal matters where in-person attendance is typically required may be waived with the consent of the district court.

Bond reviews may be conducted by telephone or videoconference. And written guilty pleas can now be submitted in felonies like they are in serious and aggravated misdemeanors.

For criminal case sentencings that are normally scheduled in-person, counsel, defendant, prosecutor, victims and witnesses may appear by telephone or videoconference with that party’s consent.

Courts may issue written sentencing orders without personal appearances.

Statutes of limitations are tolled 76 days from March 17 to June 1. And prosecutors have an additional 15 days to file timely indictments.

If you or a loved one have been arrested for a criminal Operating While Intoxicated, or, OWI, case, similar to DUI cases in other states, or any other criminal offense in Cedar Rapids or Iowa City, contact us for a free initial consultation utilizing CDC best practices. Become an informed legal consumer and let us help you navigate this difficult criminal prosecution and defense.

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