January 14, 2018

HoustonPublicMedia – Court Delays From Harvey Likely To Persist Into 2019

The Harris County court system is still adjusting to the “new normal” four months after Harvey. The storm wrecked the Criminal Justice Center and the jury assembly building. Jury trials resumed in October, but with many of the courtrooms still out of commission, County Court Manager Ed Wells says judges have to double up. “So in a month’s time, each …

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October 17, 2017

BizJournals – Harris County jury duty resumes in temporary facilities

As expected, Harris County courts resumed jury service on Oct. 16, more than a month after Hurricane Harvey closed several downtown buildings. However, court activities are still being housed in temporary facilities. Prospective jurors reported to makeshift jury assembly room in the basement of the county administration building, at 1001 Preston, and had to move to courts’ temporary locations around …

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October 16, 2017

HoustonPress – Harris County Jury Duty Is Back After Harvey — Albeit with “Portable Bathrooms”

After weeks of delayed justice since Hurricane Harvey plummeted the Harris County court system into chaos, hundreds of jurors are set to descend on the downtown court complex Monday so defendants pleading not guilty can finally start having their days in court. Jury duty was cancelled during Harvey and after the floodwaters got so high they seeped through the walls …

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September 7, 2017

KHOU – Harris County Jury Trials Delayed For At Least 1 Month

Every week, more than 7,000 potential jurors normally gather in an underground assembly room near the Harris County Criminal Justice Center. Now, there is nowhere for them to go. “Eleven feet of water had to be pumped out of here. This became a retention pond,” said Harris County District Clerk Chris Daniel. In many ways, the jury assembly room is …

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July 12, 2017

CommunityImpact – Harris County extends hours at satellite passport offices

The Harris County District Clerk’s office has extended the hours at several satellite passport offices, including offices in Humble, Spring and the Cy-Fair/Katy area. The move was made after the new offices—which were all opened in 2015 within area libraries—proved to be popular among residents as alternatives to getting passports at the post office, District Clerk Chris Daniel said. “When we …

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February 18, 2017

KHOU – Clerks Call For More Security After Attack

It was a frightening Friday inside the Harris County District Clerk’s office. A man threatened employees before throwing things at them, and it was all caught on camera. “He became agitated and grabbed a stapler and threw at the heads of the clerks,” said District Clerk Chris Daniel. Longtime employee Lori Baranowski was one of the clerks who just missed …

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September 17, 2016

HoustonChronicle – Jury duty scam becoming more brazen

When she got the call about her looming arrest, Emily Tonn was sitting at her Houston home relaxing, thinking nothing was wrong. It was a Saturday in mid-August — and on the other end of the line was an officer, telling her about two warrants that could land her behind bars for missing jury duty. Except it wasn’t really a …

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September 14, 2015

Chron.com – County mulls renovating Family Law Center, old district attorney’s building

In 2007, Harris County officials slated the Family Law Center and the old district attorney’s building for razing. But today, some county officials hold different views of the two buildings and believe that maybe the county can breathe new life into them. Commissioners Court has authorized the county to negotiate contracts with architectural firms that would develop plans to renovate …

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May 15, 2015

HoustonChronicle – District judge works to preserve Texas treasures

We’ve always known that Sam Houston and Mirabeau B. Lamar despised each other. What we didn’t know until a district judge began poking around in a Harris County warehouse is that the two Texas icons tangled in court in 1843 over a grave issue of state. Well, sort of grave. To be more precise, they tangled over used furniture in …

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