Application of the Sixth Amendment and COVID-19
The Speedy Trial Act of 1974 and state laws provide guidance as to the number of days to bring a defendant to trial before this right is violated. A prosecutor may work around the “speedy trial clock” if they can show good cause for a delay, or if a defendant agrees to waive the right. One reason for the right to a speedy trial is to prevent a defendant from being held in custody only to find out that the defendant was innocent. An innocent citizen who is incarcerated in violation of the Sixth Amendment right to a speedy trial is a violation of due process rights (2).
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