Rules Regarding Michael Dunn Trial

January 29, 2014


All Media


 January 29, 2014 (Jacksonville, FL) – The Duval County Courthouse will be the location for the trial of Michael Dunn. Jury selection is slated to begin Monday, February 3, 2014. Following jury selection, the trial will begin.

In anticipation of the high profile/high interest in this case and the proceedings, the organizations involved have organized under the Incident Command System (ICS).

There are four lead agencies – each with a representative in the Unified Command (UC). They are: Court Administration – Joe Stelma; Clerk of the Courts – Krystal Watson; City of Jacksonville/Emergency Management – Steve Woodard; and Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office – Chief Michelle Cook.

The objectives of this coordination include: To protect the Courthouse functions; provide for the safe access to the building for the public, staff, and those conducting business there. To maintain orderly traffic in the area; support the constitutional right to lawful expression that does not interfere with open access to buildings; roadways, or sidewalks; prevent and or respond to any issues; provide for the security of the Jury.

Planning has been underway for several weeks, and the following issues that are of interest to the public are outlined below:

PUBLIC SEATING IN THE COURTROOM* – Court Administration has allocated seats in the courtroom for members of the public. Attached is an APPLICATION to enter a daily “lottery”, where applicants will be drawn to fill those seats. (The rules for the drawings are attached, on the application.) Also attached is a list of the POLICIES regarding public seating in the courtroom. THERE WILL BE NO LOTTERY FOR SEATING IN THE COURTROOM DURING JURY SELECTION DAY(S). Each applicant drawn for one of the public seats in the courtroom during the trial will be advised of these rules when retrieving the credential (in person).  Any violation of the rules will result in expulsion from the proceedings.  The public seating lottery, and location for dropping off an application, is the Prime Osborn Convention Center – 300 Water Street – the Bay Street Lobby. It will be operational M-F from 6:00 am – 4:30 pm.

  • MEDIA ATTENDANCE AND CREDENTIALING – A “Media Committee”, with representatives from various news outlets, was formed at the outset of trial planning. Seats have been allotted for the media. All logistics; rules for conduct; applications for credentials; etc. have been, and will continue to be, negotiated and discussed directly between the UC members and the Media Committee representatives.
  • PUBLIC COMMUNICATON – Under the IC system, there is a Public Information Unit. It will be manned each day by PIOs from 8am – 5pm. Messages regarding traffic and other matters of public impact will be communicated. Members of the UC will NOT be available to the media for comment on the trial unless directed by the executive of the particular agency.   All requests for information should be made through the Public Information Unit.
  • Concurrently, a WEBSITE has been set up. The address is MICHAELDUNNTRIAL.COM – the purpose of the website is so ALL the public documents related to the case can be easily obtained online. The documents can be downloaded. This includes all the Administrative Orders and Judicial Orders, plus those documents that have been released by the Clerk’s Office. As other documents related to the trial become public, they will be uploaded to this site.
  • ALL Security Plans regarding this facility and the proceedings will not be discussed publicly and are confidential.

 Thank you

*Application for General Public Seating Lottery – Attached

*Rules for General Public Seating – Attached