Category Archives: Alan Wald

San Mateo County Presiding Judge Leland Davis III

By Michael G. Stogner

Dear Hon. Judge Leland Davis III on November 22, 2021, You cancelled the Public Telephone Access to the San Mateo County Courts. I’m asking you to reverse that decision.

Public Access Policy Updated 11/22/21 – The listen-only public access lines are no longer in effect; proceedings are open to the public to attend in person.

As you can see by the Alert issued today, It would be safer for the Public to listen on the phone.

Covid Act Now Logo

COVID ALERT FOR

SAN MATEO COUNTY, CALIFORNIA

RISK INCREASED

on 12/23/2021Image depicting that San Mateo County, California went from "Medium risk" to "High risk"Note that risk is reduced for those who are vaccinated.

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Reopen remote access to local courts

This Letter to the Editor was published today December 8, 2021 in the Half Moon Bay Review. Very few of the 760,000 Residents of San Mateo County have any idea that this Big Change has even occurred, Not one of the many local Newspapers have even bothered to inform their readers. It could be because they don’t have any reporters covering the Courts and none of them are even aware of this change.

Dear Editor:

San Mateo County Superior Court would have us believe this pandemic is over.

On Nov. 22, the Superior Court announced on its website that Remote Access, which enables the public to listen via telephone to courtroom proceedings, has been discontinued, effective immediately.

No explanation nor advanced notice was given. Other Bay Area counties’ Superior Courts and even the Ninth District Federal Court in San Francisco continue to provide courtroom audio via telephone.

This is a public health issue. Requiring that courtroom observers attend court proceedings in person at the 400 County Center Building in Redwood City is risky and inconvenient during this pandemic — especially so for those who reside along the coast.

Ironically, the announcement adds that Superior Court will begin to convene some court proceedings via Zoom in order to eliminate the need for court trial participants to attend hearings in person. It states, “This is to reduce the number of visits by the public to the courthouses, thereby minimizing potential infection of the public and staff.” Yet court watchers must attend in person. Sounds as if someone wants to stifle public oversight of the San Mateo County court system.

Public trials assure defendants a fair and honest playing field, and accurate reporting of court proceedings is critical to the public’s right to know. We want to trust the system, the judges, the clerks, the court reporters. We want the Remote Access telephone lines reinstated.

Alan Wald

San Francisco

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