Harrison County

This just goes to show no one is above jury duty

Judge Robin Alfred Midcalf
Judge Robin Alfred Midcalf Harrison County

Robin Alfred Midcalf got a good chuckle recently when she checked her mail.

Among the various letters was a summons for jury duty — which might evoke a different reaction from others, but not Midcalf.

She's been a Harrison County judge since 1999 and even she's not above receiving a summons.

Midcalf later posted a photo of the summons on Facebook, adding "For those who don't believe us ... the jury selection process is random!"

She said she hears from people all the time who think the system is rigged because they're always being selected.

"My husband said to me, 'I never get calls for jury duty and I've been registered ever since we moved to Mississippi.' The next week he got a summons. He thought I had something to do with it but I said no, no, no," she recalled, laughing.

She said she made her Facebook post to make it clear the process is truly random.

"Even though I'm a judge, I'm also registered to vote (and eligible for selection)," she said.

According to the United States Courts website, "each district randomly selects citizens' names from lists of registered voters people with drivers licenses who live in that district. The people randomly selected complete a questionnaire to help determine if they are qualified to serve on a jury. Those qualified are randomly chosen to be summoned to appear for jury duty."

According to the website, the selection process is meant to help make sure there's a "cross section" of the community.

As for Midcalf in this particular instance, she said she has already been excused.

"For that particular week, guess what?" she said. "I have my own trial."

Patrick Ochs: 228-896-2326, @patrickochs
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