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By Karl Terry
Local columnist 

Jury service might be more than I need in my life right now


Last updated 6/17/2023 at 11:35am

I recently received greetings from a governmental body along with a request for my service — jury service that is.

I’m very much all about people doing their civic duty through juror service but I really didn’t need this in my life right now. July is chock full of work commitments and I’m trying really hard to get back into a good work mode since I’m no longer a caregiver. It hasn’t been easy.

These days you take the jury questionnaire online where your answers go into cyber-land and are likely quickly tallied, charted and analyzed by an artificial intelligence being.

When I came to the part about whether or not there might be reasons I couldn’t serve I decided to list all my maladies, which aren’t few, and see where that gets me.

It got me an unsigned “no-reply” automatic rejection of my reasons unless I could convince the doctor to give me a note. I think I could probably convince my doctor to write me that note. After all, the last time my name was pulled for district court service said doctor was sitting next to me and he all but asked if I could maybe write him a note.

We both made it through without getting picked for a jury but it took a good part of a day and a lot of sweating out the three-month period to get past it.

There’s a new show on Prime that they are calling a documentary comedy series called “Jury” that I thought might be entertaining or offer some creative ideas for getting out of jury service. The first episode of the show was pretty stupid and not real funny. Suffice it to say I won’t be using any of the excuses these guys tried.

At one point on magistrate duty I really began to think I was being picked upon I was called so often. After we completed each service period they would congratulate you and say you won’t be called again for a certain time. I swear they lied every time or at least they must have put my name back at the head of the first list after my waiting period.

I guess I’ve been fortunate, though, I can’t begin to say how many times I’ve been called but I’ve only had to serve once as an actual juror. It was a drug possession case or maybe more accurately a dope possession case. Yes, even though the prosecutor didn’t do the greatest job it was clear that the dope possessed the drugs.

I used to think that being a newspaper guy would keep me out of jury service until I waited for two days for my editor at our small town newspaper to come back from court once upon a time.

I don’t think I’ve broken any rules by writing this, but who knows. After the judge reads this column she may very well throw me out of her courtroom. I just hope the ouster doesn’t come with handcuffs and a fine.

Karl Terry writes for Clovis Media Inc. Contact him at:

[email protected]


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