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Judge suspends evictions in Jackson County for 2 weeks

A Jackson County judge on Monday suspended eviction proceedings in the county for two weeks, citing dangers to county employees.

Circuit Judge J. Dale Youngs ordered that county employees stop posting eviction notices, conducting eviction hearings or performing evictions until Jan. 24.

The order comes after Jackson County Court deputies shot and injured a man while serving an eviction notice last week. Police said the man pointed a weapon on the court employees.

Youngs wrote that social and political unrest, combined with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, has created circumstances “in which the risks Court personnel face in simply carrying out their duties is high,” The Kansas City Star reported.

KC Tenants, a tenants’ rights organization, has been pushing for months to have court and government officials provide relief for tenants since the pandemic began. It applauded the judge’s order on Monday, saying it was an admission that “every eviction is an act of violence.”

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