Who can be a Texas Juror?

I’m set for a DWI jury trial in the near future. I don’t blog about pending cases and I’m not going to start now. But I would like to share some insight on Texas juries. Today, let’s discuss juror qualifications.

To be a juror in Texas you must

Be a citizen of the United States and of this State.
Be at least 18 years of age.
Reside in the county of jury service.
Be able to read and write.
Be of sound mind.

However,you are not allowed to be a juror if

You have been convicted of a felony or of any type of theft (unless rights have been restored);
You are now on probation or deferred adjudication for a felony or for any type of theft; or
You are now under indictment for a felony or are now under criminal charges for any type of theft.

Believe or not, some people do not want to be on a jury. They would like to excused. I’ve heard many reasons from jurors (busy at work) etc. However, here are the sure fire reasons.

You can be excused from jury duty if you

Are over 70 years of age;
Have legal custody of a child under 10 years of age and jury service would leave the child unsupervised;
Are a student in class;
Are the caretaker of a person who is unable to care for themselves (an invalid); or
Can show a physical or mental impairment or an inability to comprehend or to communicate in English.
Are a member of the United States military forces serving on active duty and deployed to a location away from your home station and out of your country of resident.

If you can be excused you still must show up. Disobeying a jury summons is not an option. Besides, if you are reading this blog we need jurors like you. Jury duty is a chance to actually hold the State to their burden. Remember, jury duty is not about “solving the case”, or “finding the truth”. Jury duty is about holding the government to its’ burden, lest we completely abandon the liberty on which we were founded.

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3 responses to “Who can be a Texas Juror?”

  1. Larry C Ford says:

    Actually a jury
    summons is just
    a request. The
    State can’t
    conscript you,
    its illegal
    taking (slavery).

    It is an invitation,
    not an obligation.

  2. W. W Woodward says:

    Mr Ford,
    “It is an invitation,not an obligation.”

    Wrong! Tell that to people who disregard the summons and end up paying the $100 fine.

  3. Mr. Ford, why would you want a juror on your jury who is so opposed to serving? The best jurors are civic-minded and want to serve, despite the hardship to themselves. Once when I was called to voir dire, another member of the panel said he was opposed to the adversarial system altogether–thought the truth did not come out in court. The judge was quite offended and questioned him extensively. I think she should have just excused him immediately. I know of other people who “get out” of jury duty through a range of ploys. But I don’t see why any trial lawyer or judge should be upset. These people aren’t going to be good jurors.

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