In Photo: Representatives from the Mayes County Court Clerk’s Office, District Attorney’s Office, and Mayes County Defense Bar join Judges Taylor, Gore, and Stout and their staff in thanking OBF for its generous grant for the new courtroom technology at the Mayes County Courthouse.
By Judge Jacqueline Stout of the District Court of Mayes County
In 2019, the Oklahoma Bar Foundation (OBF) awarded $187,306.59 in funding to fourteen various Oklahoma counties. Mayes County received the largest grant awarded this year to any county in the amount of $69,057.27. This grant money was used specifically to purchase two mobile, high-definition LED interactive touchscreens to be shared between all courtrooms, new microphones, video conferencing equipment for a secured video conference line between Courtroom 2 and the Mayes County Jail, and update all of Courtroom 2’s audio/video equipment.
“The improvements accomplished through OBF’s generosity have greatly impacted Mayes County’s legal system, ensuring citizens have the technology resources necessary to efficiently prosecute and defend their cases in today’s modern legal environment,” says Judge Stout.
This grant has enabled Mayes County to provide better security by conducting court appearances with criminal defendants via video conferencing instead of transporting defendants to and from the jail to the courtroom. The two mobile, high-definition LED interactive touchscreens are used in all types of hearings and jury trials to play videos and display documents admitted as evidence on a large screen for better viewing by the court participants. These touchscreens are shared between four courtrooms, and have already been tested and proven successful as valuable resources during the September 2019 jury term in Mayes County. The grant allowed for technology that enabled Judges to conduct jury trials in all four Mayes County courtrooms and resolve over thirty cases set for jury trial during the September 2019 jury term.
In 2008, the Oklahoma Bar Foundation created the Court Grant Fund through generous donations. Since then, $980,390.59 in funding has been awarded to sixty of the seventy-seven counties in Oklahoma, with some counties receiving multiple grants. District and Appellate Courts in Oklahoma can apply annually to receive grant funding for courtroom technology and needs related to the administration of justice.
For more information about OBF Court Grants and for a full list of recipients visit: https://www.okbarfoundation.org/grants/court-grants/