Possible computer glitch affecting jury summons; woman picked 9 times

Possible computer glitch affecting jury summons; woman picked 9 times

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - We joke about jury duty not being fun, but it is part of our civic duty. However, a potential computer issue in Cuyahoga County could mean that some people are more likely to be called to take on the task.

Every week at the Justice Center downtown, 300 names are randomly picked for jury duty.  But for one local woman, how often her name is picked has become a running joke.

Jennifer Rogers is an expert on reporting for jury duty. She's received nine jury summons over the past 12 years. She has sat on one grand, one federal, and one municipal jury. In fact, she just got off a case a little over a month ago.

"Usually what I do is snap a picture and send it to my friend, like, again!" she said.

Rogers respects that its her civic duty, but its a lot of time away from work committed to being in court, while people like her husband have never been summoned.

"Between two or three times, I've had to say, I just served last year, and they say okay, you're excused," she said. 

Administrative judge for the Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court John Russo says that people are supposed to get called about every two years. According to him, jury selection is random, with 300 names picked electronically per week based on voter registration. But Russo says there could be a glitch with addresses that would put your name back in the pot too soon.

"Maybe someone moved to a different address and registered with the board of election with a different address and then got thrown back in the hopper," he said.

Rogers hasn't changed her address, but she did change her name when she got married.

Another potential issue could come in federal, state and municipal jury draws being separate. This means you could find yourself in a jury room for municipal court and still be eligible for federal court.

"Each court would individually be responsible for deciding if they should or not," explains Russo.

The selection pool normally grows in an election year because more people register to vote.

"We're going to look at the process and make sure that's working accurately," said Russo. It will likely be after the election until the county knows for sure if there is a problem with the system.

Download the Cleveland 19 News app

Copyright 2016 WOIO. All rights reserved.