Defendant tests positive, trial postponed


MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) – In a surprising turn during the Chandler Halderson trial, the defendant has tested positive for COVID-19 and the trial will be postponed.

The judge opened the floor to attorneys so that they may weigh in on how to proceed with the trial. The state said they would defer to the judge’s decision.

The defense told the judge that Chandler Halderson had been showing symptoms before the Dec. 29, 2021 and his symptoms were subsiding after that, meaning they don’t believe he was newly infected with the virus.

Judge says he does not want to declare a mistrial and he says he will talk with Dane Co. Jail staff to inquire about isolation and testing procedures.

— Elizabeth Wadas TV (@ElizabethWadas) January 11, 2022

The defense also stated that Chandler has not been near the jury and everyone has been masked up.

Both the prosecution and the defense attorneys emphasized that they did not wish for a mistrial.

Jail protocol states inmates must be kept in isolation for 10 days. The judge will reach out to employees at the jail to see if they can make an exception to this.

The trial will be postponed, but it will not be a mistrial. The jury will reconvene in the morning Wednesday to be notified of the development.

According to jail records, Chandler Halderson is fully vaccinated against COVID-19. It is unclear if he has received a booster shot.

The Dane County Jail announced Monday that all inmates were being tested for COVID-19 as a record high number of cases were being reported there.

The 23-year-old Dane County man is accused of killing his parents, Bart and Krista Halderson. The sixth day of testimony had been completed when the announcement of Chandler Halderson’s diagnosis came in.

The trial is scheduled to last for up to three weeks.

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