SAN ANTONIO – For the first time in nearly two years, the Bexar County courts will be fully open in January.
COVID-19 has forced delays to in-person jury trials twice, causing a backlog in cases.
Starting January 3, there will be no restrictions to the number of in-person jury trials taking place.
“As long as we are in the mild or safer categories then we will be okay to continue jury trials,” local administrative judge Ron Rangel said.
With the number of cases awaiting trial, we can expect multiple trials going on at the same time.
“We are doing a lot of murders and a lot of sex cases and that’s because those are the folks that are in custody now,” Rangel said. “So we are trying to move those courts and those cases.”
Some of those cases are high-profile ones like that of Andre McDonald, who is charged with the murder of his wife Andreen McDonald, and Emond Johnson who is charged with the murder of SAPD firefighter Scott Deem.
As for Rangel, his term as the local administrative judge ends after this year, but he will still be the administrative judge for the district criminal courts.
“I’ve been very fortunate to be in this position, I feel very humble,” Rangel said.