Todd Schmitz
Deputy Clerk

Carmella Sabaugh
Macomb County
Clerk / Register of Deeds

Betty A. Oleksik
Deputy Register of Deeds

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

July 24, 2007

CONTACT:

Carmella Sabaugh 586-469-7939
Antonio Viviano 586-469-5438

 
     

COUNTY SENDS 30,000 JUROR QUESTIONNAIRES
19 bench warrants issued for failure to appear for jury duty

Macomb County Clerk / Register of Deeds Carmella Sabaugh said her office sent out 30,000 juror qualification questionnaires to potential jurors and the circuit court issued 19 bench warrants to those who failed to report for jury duty.

“If you got a green questionnaire, it is not a jury summons and you do not have to report for jury duty at this time, but you must still reply,” said Sabaugh. “These questionnaires are used to form the pool from which future jurors may be summoned.”

"Self government imposes the responsibility on citizens to govern themselves," said Chief Judge Antonio Viviano. "Jury duty is an important method of discharging our responsibility to govern ourselves. In most cases, the litigants have a right to trial by jury. There must be jurors and it is important that people respond to jury questionnaires. Unfortunately, the Court must issue bench warrants for people who do not voluntarily discharge their duties."

The odds of getting picked for jury duty are slim. Of those who are summoned to the courthouse, about 12% actually serve on a trial. Jurors are paid $25 for the first day of service and $40 for each additional day. Free parking is available and there is a cafeteria in the Court Building.

People age 70 or older do not have to serve for jury duty. Convicted felons are not eligible. A person may request a postponement of their jury duty by showing proof of travel plans or a doctor’s note verifying illness.

“The Michigan Secretary of State provides a list of jurors based on driver’s licenses and Michigan identification cards,” said Sabaugh. “Jurors are not selected from voting records. Please do not skip registering to vote out of fear of getting picked for jury duty. The lists are not linked.”

Details about Macomb County jury duty may be found on Sabaugh’s web site at http://www.macombcountymi.gov/clerksoffice/JuryRoom.htm

Sabaugh made several jury duty improvements, including:

  • Created a “one-day/one-trial” system, limiting jury duty for most people to just one day and saving taxpayer dollars.
  • With help from the Suburban Mobility Authority for Regional Transportation (SMART) provides free bus service to jurors who don’t have transportation to and from the courthouse.
  • With help from Donald Worrell, Mount Clemens Public Library Director, provides free library materials, letting jurors request books on Sabaugh’s web site to be delivered to the jury room.
  • Provides free wireless Internet in the jury room, letting jurors stay in touch with family or work while waiting to be sent to a courtroom.

“As far as I know there is no book called, ‘How to Get Out of Jury Duty,’” said Sabaugh. “But if there was, it would be available to jurors through our juror book program.”

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Clerk's Office
40 N. Main St.
Mount Clemens, MI 48043
586-469-5120
Fax: 586-783-8184
http://www.macombcountymi.gov/clerksoffice
clerksoffice@macombcountymi.gov

Fax-On-Demand

Michigan: 1-888-99-CLERK
Out of State: 310-575-5035

Register of Deeds
10 N. Main St.
Mount Clemens, MI 48043
586-469-5175
Fax: 586-469-5130
http://www.macombcountymi.gov/registerdeeds

registerdeeds@macombcountymi.gov