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Jury Duty Important

I showed up for jury duty May 8 and was not selected for a jury. I was asked why I did not try to get out of jury duty since I have other things to do in Edinburg. My experience as Chair of the Board of Lutheran Social Service of Texas taught me some important lessons about jury duty.

As the chair of the board, I had to authorize out of court settlements for lawsuits involving the agency. Once I was called from the bed of a dying patient to plan an out of court settlement of a civil case.

Our attorneys then told us 98% of the jurors who lived in apartment projects in major cities were unchurched and often hostile to the church. When we would go to trial, the attorneys would check the mailing addresses of the jury pool. If too many lived in apartments, we settled out of court.

If we could get a change of venue, we would usually try to have the case moved to a small town where people are more sympathetic to the church and church groups.

Who serves on a jury often decides who wins the case. I felt my presence was needed in the jury pool last week.

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