2008-02-11

Jury duty

I put in my jury service today. Los Angeles has a one-day-one-trial system, so you call in for a week and show up only if told to via phone. I wasn't chosen for any trials, so I'm done for the next 364 days. The one jury for which I could have been selected had Christopher Darden as defense attorney. When introduced to the potential jurors, he stood up and said hello with friendly smile and a sort of bow.

I noticed that most of my fellow jurors were white, with the rest black and asian. Most jurors looked over 35. I saw few hispanics, though of course that observation conflates ethnicity with race. Nonetheless, it didn't seem too representative of Los Angeles.

We were categorized in three groups - those who's employer would pay for unlimited days of service, those who had employers that would pay for a limited number of days (between 1 and 300), and those who had employers couldn't or wouldn't pay them for jury service (including self employed and unemployed).

Surprisingly, the unlimited service pool was the largest by far, the limited service pool smallest, and uncompensated split the difference. I was in the limited pool (my employer has a stated policy of 10 days paid service, though I've heard they will go higher at a judge's request).