A juror must be fair and impartial and able to make decisions free of any bias or prejudice. Jurors are charged with carefully listening to and evaluating the evidence presented in the case. The jurors must unanimously agree that the defendant is or is not guilty of the offense alleged.
How Jurors are Selected
Jurors for all trials in Texas are randomly selected from a list of voter and driver registrations from the county in which you live. Trials conducted in a municipal court will only be heard by U.S. citizens that reside in the City of Mansfield. Therefore, selecting a trial by jury in the Mansfield Municipal Court of Record will result in a jury of six (6) persons from the Mansfield community.
Cases Heard By The Jury In A Mansfield Court
Any person charged with a crime, including a Class C misdemeanor, as well as either party to a civil suit has the right to request a trial by jury. The Mansfield Municipal Court of Record will ensure that each defendant has the right to a trial by jury in all cases for which the Court has jurisdiction. A municipal court does not hear civil cases other than those allowed by law. Therefore, this Court will primarily hear cases wherein a defendant is charged with committing a Class C misdemeanor offense or violation of a city ordinance. The accused is presumed innocent, and the Municipal Prosecutor must prove the defendant's guilt "beyond a reasonable doubt." Jurors will be charged with carefully listening to and evaluating the evidence presented to decide whether the person charged is guilty or not guilty of the offense alleged.
Payment for Jury Services
If you actually serve on the jury, you will be paid $6.00 per day for each day you actually serve. Most cases in a municipal court are concluded within a few hours.
Your employer is not required to pay you for the time away from work while serving on jury duty. However, an employer is prohibited by law from firing any employee for serving as a juror.
A municipal court juror must be:
- a citizen of the United States and the State of Texas;
- 18 years of age or older;
- a resident of the county and the community / city of jury service;
- able to read and write;
- of sound mind.
A person cannot serve on a jury if:
- he or she has been convicted of a felony or of any type of theft (unless all rights have been fully restored by law);
- he or she is on probation or deferred disposition for a felony or for any type of theft; or,
- he or she is under indictment for a felony or are under criminal charges for any type of theft.
* If there is any doubt as to whether you qualify as a juror for one or more of the above reasons, please notify the Judge prior to the trial.
Exemptions from Jury Service
Although you are not required to claim an exemption from service, the following persons may exercise their right to be excused from jury service for the following reasons:
- Any person over 70 years of age;
- Any person having legal custody of a child or children under 15 years of age whose service on the jury would leave the child unsupervised or without adequate care;
- Any person who is a student in a public or private secondary school or enrolled and in actual attendance at an institution of higher education;
- Any person who is the primary caretaker of a person who is an invalid or unable to care for himself or herself;
- Any person who has served as a juror in a county court for 6 consecutive days in the last three months within 24 months prior to the date of the request jury service; or in the District Court within the preceding six months.
- Any person who is an officer or employee of the Senate, House of Representatives or any other department, commission, board, office, or other agency in the legislative branch of State government; or,
- Any person who can show a physical or mental impairment or an inability to comprehend and communicate in the English language.