Today was my first day of grand jury duty. I felt like it was the first day of school!
You have to go through security each time you leave the courthouse and come back in. If you go outside to make a phone call, you have to pass through security again.
We started out by calling the session to order and had a grand jury seminar showing the importance of the grand jury and how we are POWER!! I absolutely love how these people have a great sense of humor, for example, throughout the seminar, there was a power point presentation shown on the overhead projector so we could follow along with what was being said. Every once in a while, you'd see photos that just made you laugh, like one of Roger Clemens with the caption that reads "I will tell the truth, really" (he was on trial for lying to Congress). Or the photo of a ham sandwich and we were told it really isn't true that all DA's can indict a ham sandwich. References to Law and Order TV show and 12 Angry Men.
This is what it looks like inside the room where we will be meeting for the next 2 years:
About half way through the seminar, we had to stop that and actually moved onto our first case. We heard evidence from detectives, a witness and saw pictures. This will be an on-going case that we will be investigating, so I can't tell you anything about the case itself. It's all TOP SECRET! So, don't ask.
When we finished up with that part, we went back to the seminar and wrapped that up. It was really informative and nothing like you see on TV. :o)
Then, we heard a second case and the attorney questioned a police officer about the case. We were asked to hold our questions about this one until we meet again.
We were there for a total of 5 hours today. You have to remember, we are an investigative grand jury, not one that gets to yell "guilty" or things like that, we are helping the attorneys get enough evidence to move forward to present to the court. We all ready have 6 cases to work on. It's all a very interesting process.
We got our official notebooks and pens, which are taken from us after each session and double locked in a closet located somewhere in the courthouse. Then they magically appear again for our next session. At the end of our time with the grand jury, each notebook and all it contains are shredded.
So, until we meet again!