Update, March 27: Courts and Law Enforcement Respond to Coronavirus


In light of the national emergency due to the outbreak of Coronavirus (COVID-19), courts and law enforcement agencies at every level of Government have taken extraordinary actions:


  • For more information regarding other federal jurisdictions, see our prior posts. 


  • Law enforcement agencies are enforcing the Governor’s stay-at-home orders by charging violators criminally. State Police Superintendent Patrick Callahan announced that 13 “illegal” gatherings were broken up by police across the state. In six cases, disorderly persons charges were filed, including one case in which police ejected thirty people from a “corona party” in Penns Grove and filed charges against the host. At least one allegedly intoxicated driver who was charged with Driving Under the Influence was also charged with a separate disorderly persons offense for traveling unnecessarily, in violation of the Executive Order. Attorney General Gurbur Grewal was quoted as saying, “If you’re out there engaged in criminal activity, technically, by definition you’re in violation of the governor’s orders.”
  • To prevent residential evictions during the state of emergency, the Legislature authorized and Governor Murphy signed an Executive Order which stays the enforcement of all judgments for possession, warrants of removal, and writs of eviction until two months after the end of the emergency or further Executive Order. The Order does not prevent foreclosure and eviction actions from being initiated or proceeding, but only stays the execution of final judgments unless the trial court finds it necessary for enforcement to proceed in the interest of justice.
  • For more information, see our prior posts.


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