COURT WATCH: Accused’s Jury Trial Delayed Briefly after Court Learns of Premature Child’s Doctor Appointment

By Perla Chavez and Jonathan Nunez

MODESTO, CA — An accused’s jury trial was hastily rescheduled—not by much—this week when the Stanislaus County Superior Court learned of the accused’s parental obligation to take his premature baby to a doctor’s appointment.

Judge Carrie Stephens ultimately dismissed the accused’s apprehensiveness.

On Jan. 10, 2023, the accused’s case was filed. Ever since, the accused has attended almost every hearing and conference regarding his case. The accused’s jury trial was supposed to commence Monday, but because of scheduling conflicts, Judge Carrie Stephens decided to reschedule the jury trial to Tuesday, March 5.

The accused shared information Monday about a prior commitment for their baby’s doctor appointment at 10 a.m. in Oakland, CA.

But, Monday, Judge Stephens rescheduled the jury trial hearing for 1:30 p.m. to give the accused time to go to the doctor and attend trial.

The accused claimed, “I don’t know if I’m going to be back by then,” to which Judge Stephens stated, “I would think you would be back.” The accused’s concern is that the drive time between Oakland and Stanislaus County Superior Court is about two hours.

After Judge Stephens assured the accused that he would be back in time for the hearing, the prosecutor agreed, stating, “He’s supposed to be in trial anyway.”

Judge Stephens reaffirmed her decision by stating, “It’s set for trial, there’s not a lot of flexibility that I have under that circumstance.”

About The Author

Jonathan is a fourth year UC Davis student pursuing a major in English and a minor in Professional Writing and African American Studies. By working alongside the Vanguard Court Watch, Jonathan not only hopes to deepen his passion for criminal justice, but he also wishes to deepen the connection he has with his community through his writing. In his free time, Jonathan enjoys hanging out with his friends and making short stories about the world around him.

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