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Douglas County Courthouse to temporarily close as number of cases continues to grow

City officials provide update for COVID-19
Posted at 10:19 PM, Apr 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-04 02:24:00-04

OMAHA, NE — Douglas County Health Director Dr. Adi Pour is still not considering a shelter-in-place order for the county and says current orders are strict enough. However, she says an increased number of people are going to crowded parks, and pushes the message of, "just stay home."

When asked about the death threats she allegedly received from former Omaha TV meteorologist Ronald Penzkowski, Dr. Pour says her main focus continues to be combating the virus.

"I don't have time to really think about those disturbances," Dr. Pour said at the Friday press conference.

A few days ago a Douglas County prosecutor tested positive for the virus. On Friday it was announced that the courthouse will have restricted access starting Monday.

"We will still be doing arraignments and felony bond settings everyday. They will be done using the video conferencing system that we've been using," Omaha city prosecutor Matt Kuhse said. "Trials, preliminary hearings, things of that nature have all been moved."

People seeking protection orders, or seeking to file small claims will be allowed to do so, but will be escorted in and out of the building. City hall is restricting access as well.

Meanwhile seven more individuals have tested positive for COVID-19 at the Douglas County Health Center.

"That brings our total positives at the health center to 18. 13 residents and 5 staff," Douglas County Commissioner Mary Ann Borgeson said.

Extra precautions have been put in place for the building as officials continue to monitor the situation.

As more changes come about, officials say the most important thing is taking care of one another and of course, staying home.