I was called to appear for Jury Duty at the Superior Court of Maricopa County. That's in downtown Phoenix. I seem to get called every year or two, but not always for the same court, and usually, I don't even have to show up. Previously, when I had been asked to actually appear at the designated court, I was never selected for a trial. Here are ten things that you may or may not know about jury duty for the Superior Court.
- If you are a registered voter in Maricopa County, or you have a driver license in Maricopa County, you might be called for jury duty.
- Not everyone has to appear for a full day. I didn't have to appear until 1 p.m. on my assigned day.
- The jury assembly area has vending machines with snacks and soft drinks. In the building next door, there's also a food court with various fast food options.
- If you appear for jury duty, you will either be assigned to a trial or released. If you aren't picked as a juror, your service is finished on that day, when you are released.
- There is free parking and a shuttle in downtown Phoenix. It was easy to maneuver. You can also get to this location using METRO Light Rail. The address of the court in Phoenix is 175 W. Madison St.
- You must assume that you'll have to stay until 5 p.m. They won't keep you later than that.
- Wireless Internet is provided in the jury assembly room.
- You don't have to serve if you are over 75 years old.
- Your employer can't stop you from serving as a juror, nor can they penalize you for it. They don't have to pay you, though.
- If you are selected to serve on a jury you are paid $12 per day plus some mileage reimbursement. If you are retired, unemployed, or your employer is not paying you for the time you are serving, you may be entitled to more, possibly as much as $300 per day.
Once inside the courtroom, being interviewed with 49 other prospective jurors, I admit that I was surprised at some of the things that I heard. For instance, when the group was asked how many people had family or close friends convicted of a criminal offense, I'd say that almost half the group had someone close to them in that situation. Further, upon being asked how many people in the group owned a gun, a significant percentage of the group responded in the affirmative. I know that not only do many people own licensed weapons, but that it is even legal in Arizona to carry a concealed weapon (but not in court!) if properly licensed. Is 40% gun ownership in households really representative of our area?
Important Note: Be wary of anyone who calls you asking for personal information and stating that they represent the court. This is a known scam!
If you have more questions about jury duty at Maricopa County Superior Court, visit them online.