The Arkansas Supreme Court has again suspended jury trials in the state, this time until April 30.

Jury trials have been suspended since March 2020 after Governor Asa Hutchinson declared a state of emergency for Arkansas relating to the COVID-19 pandemic, which on Friday the Governor extended until March 31.

In its most recent order, the high court said the courts of Arkansas have remained open and will continue to remain open and the actions of suspending jury trials is to protect the safety of jurors, litigants, attorneys, court personnel and the public.

“The Supreme Court of Arkansas is encouraged by the recent downward trend in COVID-19 infections in the state and by the increase in vaccinations,” the order said. “Going forward, we will continue to monitor these trends with the anticipation that, if positive progress continues, jury trials may resume May 1, 2021. We therefore recommend that circuit court judges, circuit court clerks, prosecuting attorneys, public defenders and private attorneys take the next few weeks to prepare for the resumption of jury trials.”