New system to improve contact with BarCo court

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Online service to ease communications with prospective jurors

Beginning next month, prospective jurors in Barry County can choose to communicate with the court by text or e-mail, as the Barry County Circuit Court implements the new Show-Me Jury system.

According to Circuit Court Clerk Craig Williams, the Barry County Circuit Court will mail new Show-Me Jury questionnaire letters or postcards starting Feb. 15 for jury service beginning March 16.

“A big benefit to the public will be the ease of contacting and communicating with the courts, and in particular, the jury supervisor’s office,” Williams said. “Although Show-Me Jury is not completely paperless, it allows our potential jurors to do more online and choose how they want the court to let them know if they have been excused or disqualified for serving or if their service has been postponed or canceled. It really has made jury service so much more convenient for our citizens.”

The new system will run on the following protocol:

• The circuit court will send a letter or postcard through the postal mail to the juror notifying them of their service.

• When potential jurors receive the letter or postcard, they will be directed to go online at www.courts.mo.gov/ejuror to complete their juror qualification forms. This online questionnaire lets them choose their preferred method of communication with the court — whether by postal service, e-mail or even text message. For prospective jurors who remain in the pool of qualified jurors after completing their questionnaires, this means the local court could send the summons for jury duty electronically.

• Potential jurors who believe they are not qualified for jury service under state law can follow the online instructions to submit their necessary documentation electronically.

• For potential jurors who provide the appropriate contact information, the circuit clerk’s office can notify them by text message or e-mail before they report for service if their service is no longer is needed.

For potential jurors who do not have access to a computer, they can come to the circuit clerk’s office to fill out their questionnaire on the public access terminal. Potential jurors may also have a family member or friend that has access to a computer help them fill out their questionnaire online.

If a juror has a question concerning jury duty, they can call the court’s automated telephone messaging system at 417-847-3133 option 1 or check the court’s website: www.barrycountycourt.com for information.

Missouri courts do not require anyone to provide confidential information over the telephone or by e-mail. The Show-Me Jury system is designed to give citizens a choice how they want to communicate with their local courts about potential jury service. Any telephone call or e-mail threatening the recipient with fines or jail time for failure to comply are fraudulent, are in no way connected with Missouri courts and should be reported to local law enforcement officials.

“Juries are a hallmark of the American justice system, and we truly appreciate the willingness of our citizens to serve as jurors,” Williams said. “Through the Show-Me Jury system, we hope to make that service much easier and more convenient.”

The new Show-Me Jury system was piloted in the St. Louis City Circuit Court beginning in February 2017.

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