PRESS RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Video teleconferencing comes to the Law Division

Released On 05/09/2005

Chief Cook County Judge Timothy C. Evans and Law Division Presiding Judge William D. Maddux announced the court has launched a pilot program in four Law Division courtrooms to test the use of video teleconference technology to allow live remote testimony from witnesses. The program was created in response to requests from attorneys seeking to eliminate the need for some witnesses to be physically present in the courtroom.

The Law Division Video Teleconference Pilot Program is available in the four General Individual Calendars of the Law Division located in the Richard J. Daley Center: Calendar "H" in courtroom 2209; Calendar "I" in Courtroom 2207; Calendar "J" in courtroom 2401; and Calendar "Z" in courtroom 1912.

Chief Judge Evans said he was excited about expanding the use of video technology in the circuit court. "The potential for useful application of video teleconferencing throughout the Law Division, as well as in other divisions of the court, is substantial," said Chief Judge Evans. Video technology is also used in Central Bond Court at 26th and California in the form of closed circuit television for certain bond hearings.

Presiding Judge Maddux noted the pilot program will allow for more flexibility in trial scheduling and swifter disposition of some cases. He also said the court will conduct demonstrations of the video teleconference technology for judges and attorneys to facilitate sessions.

The Law Division Video Teleconference Pilot Program uses a portable video teleconference set-up that can be wheeled into the courtroom. In addition to the requisite camera, monitors, and microphones, the set-up includes a document camera to allow for display of documents and exhibits pertaining to testimony. Equipment will be operated by Office of the Chief Judge employees assigned to the Office of Information Services. There will be no court costs to litigants for the use of the equipment or for services of court employees. Attorneys are responsible for the cost of initiating a video teleconference session, and all other costs associated with arranging for the appearance of the witness and the use of video teleconference equipment at the remote location.

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