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Jury duty is no joke. You sit. You wait. You suffer boredom or Ken Burns overload. But still. You have to do it. It’s like voting, changing your MD tags to DC tags, and reading Loose Lips. I confess: A few years back, I kinda ignored my jury duty invites. I know I failed to RSVP until after the deadline. But recently, I did show up for my federal court jury time.
Apparently, 100 residents failed to show up for their Superior Court experience. Today, the hammer fell pretty hard on these 100 no-shows.
According to the D.C. Superior Court press release:
“D.C. Superior Court Chief Judge Rufus King III announced today that he had issued bench warrants for nearly 100 peoplewho had failed to appear on their date of jury service, and had not appeared before him at a ‘show cause’ hearing that was scheduled for them to explain their absence. Those for whom bench warrants have been issued are subject to arrest at any time, and will then be detained by law enforcement until they can be brought before a judge….
The penalty for failure to appear for jury duty includes fines of up to $300 or up to seven days in jail. Comparable penalties may be imposed for contempt of court for failure to appear when summoned to a show cause hearing….
“Jury duty is every citizen’s responsibility. Our Constitution provides that every person is considered innocent until proven guilty by a jury of their peers. That system won’t work unless each and every one of us takes our civic responsibility seriously. Many people willingly participate in the jury system and most of them find it a rewarding experience; however others ignore their jury summons. It is unfair for some D.C. residents to fulfill their responsibility and others to shirk it,” said Chief Judge King.