Hawkins sessions, chancery courts reopening Monday

Hawkins County Sessions court Judge Todd Ross and Chancellor Doug Jenkins

ROGERSVILLE — Hawkins County Sessions Court Judge Todd Ross announced Thursday that the Tennessee Supreme Court had approved the plan to reopen his court on Monday.

Traffic cases and arraignments are scheduled for 9 a.m., with criminal dockets at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.

If you have a scheduled court appearance or have been subpoenaed in a case, you will be expected to be present.

“Everyone will be screened at the door, and precautions will be taken to ensure social distancing,” Ross said. “Once you report to the officers at the front, you will receive instructions on where to report for court or where to wait until your case is called.”

Civil cases will resume Tuesday. Ross noted that at this time, the court is still prohibited from taking any action to effectuate an eviction.

Those cases will be reset for a later date to be determined by the Tennessee Supreme Court.

If you have missed a court date during the pandemic, call (423) 272-3300 to reschedule.

“I am happy to work with everyone that has been affected by this, but please understand that if we don’t hear from you to reschedule, then I have no choice but to ask our fine officers to provide you with a ride to the Justice Center and a place to stay until I can see you in court,” Ross said. “I’m sure you would rather avoid this, as would I.”

Ross added, “I ask that you please be patient and to expect delays. We are going to work together to handle all matters as efficiently as possible, while maintaining the required safety precautions. I sincerely appreciate your cooperation, understanding, and courtesy to our officers. This will be a difficult time for everyone, but we will get through it.”

Third Judicial District Chancellor Doug Jenkins announced last week that the plan for reopening the district’s courts for in-person hearings has been approved.

“We are happy to announce that it is one of the first five plans in the state to be approved,” Jenkins said. “If you have any questions of me, my office number is (423) 272-4311.”

Jenkins added, “The long and short of it is the courts will resume as normal schedule as possible beginning in Greene County on May 1, 2020, and the courts in Hamblen, Hancock, and Hawkins counties May 4 going forward. For your convenience, the following link will take you to the Tennessee Administrative Office of the Courts website where the approved plans across the state are posted for public viewing: https://www.tncourts.gov/node/6042449.”

Hawkins County Criminal Court Judge John Dugger isn’t scheduled to return to Rogersville until June 1.