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The usual order of events in District Court follows the steps below:
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Your name was selected at random from voter registration and driver’s license and “identicard” records. Your answers to the juror questionnaire were evaluated to make sure you were eligible for jury service.
To be eligible, you must be
If you have been convicted of a felony, you must have had your civil rights restored.
In Grant County District Court you will be hearing testimony and receiving evidence from misdemeanor and gross misdemeanor cases such as DUI, theft, assault, driving while suspended, disorderly conduct, etc., as well as civil cases not exceeding $50,000. More serious felony cases such as robbery or homicide are handled in Superior Court.
The judge will tell you about the case and will introduce the lawyers. Following explanations and taking of the oath, the judge and the lawyers will question you, and other members of the panel to determine if you are impartial. This process is called “VOIR DIRE”, a phrase meaning to “speak the truth”. Some of the questions may seem very personal; the lawyers are not trying to embarrass you but are trying to make sure you do not have opinions or past experiences which might prevent you from making an impartial decision.
At the conclusion of the questioning, the lawyers will challenge jurors in order to reach the final six persons. Once selected, the jury will be provided with an opportunity to call their homes or offices prior to the start of the trial.
Jurors are excused for several reasons and the lawyers rarely tell you why. Don’t be upset if you are excused or challenged, it is nothing against you personally. Just enjoy the freedom to leave when excused.
After your jury service is completed, Grant County will pay you $10.00 for each day you serve, as well as mileage for traveling to and from the courthouse if you must travel from a town other than the one in which you reside. You should expect payment within 30 days from the end of your jury term. Again, thank you for your participation.
Additional information about Jury Service in Washington State may be found at the Washington Courts Jury Service page.