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AZ court emergency after fed judge’s death

The top federal judge in Arizona has declared a judicial emergency because of the death of her predecessor in a shooting rampage in Tucson.

The declaration by Chief District Judge Rosyln Silver means that part of a federal law requiring a trial to start within 70 days of a defendant’s indictment are temporarily suspended.

The Jan. 8 death of Judge John Roll in a shooting that killed five others and wounded Rep. Gabrielle Giffords compounded a shortage of judges in the state.

Silver’s order only affects defendants indicted between Jan. 20 and Feb. 19, but 9th Circuit federal judges announced a one-year extension on Tuesday.

A defendant’s right to have a trial begin within 70 days is extended to 180 days during the emergency.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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