MCKINNEY, Texas — At 9:30 a.m. Wednesday, Judge Piper McCraw of 469th District Court of Collin County held court in the office of her home. Addressing a temporary restraining order is normally a rudimentary and everyday proceeding. But as counties adopt social distancing guidelines by the CDC because of the coronavirus, people are needing to get creative so operations continue.
"This is uncharted territory for everyone," McCraw said.
It is a new normal that will take some getting used to. McCraw showed WFAA the eight other people on video-conference in separate windows of her laptop screen. The other people on the conference consisted of attorneys, court a reporter, and witnesses.
"People need to know we're still here, we're still working. This is a new normal for us," McCraw said.
The judge says only essential matters are being heard at this time. All other matters have been re-set. The 469th District Court handles family violence cases and CPS cases.
"We're always concerned when school's not in session on CPS. We wanna make sure there are eyes on those children that need to be protected," the judge said.
They will have two to three hearings a day. Everything the judge needs is on her desk: a laptop, notepad, code book, and the online presence of the support people who make it all happen.
"I think there is a need for a formality and decorum of the court. I will tell you...I don't have on pajamas." the judge laughed.
This move is proof that justice is not confined to a courthouse.
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