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Poll: How Do You Feel About Jury Duty?

April 21, 2013 Crime, Featured, Sunday Poll 10 Comments

Most likely you’ve been called to the courthouse to participate in a jury pool.

Jury pool waiting room for the 22nd Circuit Court in St. Louis
Jury pool waiting room for the 22nd Circuit Court in St. Louis

The poll question this week is how do you feel about this? Do you look forward to participating in our justice system or do you try to get out of it? The poll is located in the right sidebar.

— Steve Patterson

 

Currently there are "10 comments" on this Article:

  1. guest says:

    Jury service in St. Louis is unlike jury service in most of the region. The pool of eligible city jurors is shrinking, requiring more frequent jury service than our counterparts in St. Charles and St. Louis counties. As we look to combine more public services in our region, maybe we could combine jury pools? Another potential flaw is how the current system is stacked against civil defendants. City juries tend to be more generous on the side of civil plaintiffs, causing ambulance chasing, personal injury lawyers seeking to locate their various car accident and medical malpractice cases in city courts. Just like our public school system, the city court system has reached the point of being unfair and broken for its intended audience – the general public.

     
  2. JZ71 says:

    Depends on one’s employment status. When I’m self-employed, jury duty means being unable to be responsive to my clients and losing income. When I work for an employer who “lets me off” for jury duty (and makes up for the difference in jury pay and my salary), it’s much easier to be a “good citizen”. The other big disincentive in the city is that you can easily spend a day (or more) stuck in the holding room waiting to be called. Given modern technology and/or better management, it should be possible to cut that to 4 hours or less, when you’re either cut loose or assigned to a trial. The one time I actually ended up on a jury (and serving for 3 days) it was actually a good experience, it’s just the hurry-up-and-wait selection process that’s a real pain.

     
  3. aaronlevi says:

    ive been twice in the 11 years since i’ve live in st louis. both times were in the last 6 years. i really look forward to being on a jury, seems like a fun experience (and yes, my employer pays me while i’m there). both times i was pulled into the “selection pool” and both times, as they were to begin jury selection the defendant plead out and we were sent home. boring, but i was able to get some good reading done on both occasions.

     
  4. aaronlevi says:

    not sure about the option of “i don’t vote, so i don’t get called”. i was told it was no longer based on voter registration, but having a driver’s license. anyone know if this is true?

     
    • From the court FAQ: “Voting is a right guaranteed by the US and Missouri constitutions. Whether you exercise that right is your choice. Jury service is a duty required by law. The court is authorized to draw names from any public list for the purpose of summoning jurors. The lists most commonly used are provided by the Department of Revenue and the Board of Election.”

       
      • bailorg says:

        When I was called recently in St. Louis County, I was told that they also drew from the list of people with drivers’ licenses to fill the jury pool, precisely to pull back in people who aren’t registered voters.

         
  5. I want to get selected, but it does not happen. I would like to see the city come up with a more efficient system. I don’t like sitting in that waiting room for complete days. There surely is a better way to do this. It always seems like the city has called way more people than necessary.

     
  6. frank says:

    I don’t mind the jury obligation. The experience is always enlightening and you get to meet some very interesting people in the jury pools.

     
  7. RyleyinSTL says:

    Voter registration can’t be the only way they collect names in the city. I’m not a citizen (nor is my wife) and we have both been called to serve. I actually find it somewhat alarming that we would be called to begin with (at the time we were here on temporary VISAs). Our citizenship/VISA status wasn’t/isn’t a secret to the Mo Department of Revenue (such info is collected and recorded by them), clearly the process could use some fine tuning.

     

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