Page 1 - Grand Jury Orientation Facts_120820
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K N O X   C O U N T Y

                G R A N D   J U R Y

                ORIENTATION FACTS

            •  GENERAL INFORMATION ABOUT SERVING ON A GRAND JURY: You will hear from witnesses on
               cases that are in the Knox County court system.  This is not a trial and it is not held in a
               courtroom.  The Grand Jurors learn an incredible amount about our justice system during their
               service. At the end of every term, most Grand Jurors tell us that it has been one of the best
               experiences of their lives.

            •  We will give you information on the Grand Jury process when you begin service.  The two
               absolutely critical things we need from you are simple -- ATTENDANCE and SECRECY.  These
               are vital  to being  a Grand Juror.    You will take an oath  --  including an  oath of secrecy  --
               administered from a Knox County Criminal Court Judge.  You may not disclose any sworn
               testimony that you hear while you are on the Grand Jury.  IMPORTANT: If you are selected for
               the Grand Jury and fail to appear for service, the Court may issue an Order to Show Cause
               under T.C.A. §22-2-309.  You can be fined up to $500 and be held in civil contempt.

            •  An experienced Grand Juror will be leading your Grand Jury as the foreperson.  He or she can
               answer questions you may have about your service.  Each foreperson has been appointed by
               a Knox County Criminal Court Judge and is very knowledgeable and helpful.  In addition, you
               will have a legal advisor from the Knox County District Attorney’s Office who will be present
               during testimony of witnesses.  The Grand Jury deliberates in secret with no one else present,
               including your legal advisor.  Your job is very important but very limited - you must determine
               if there is probable cause to believe a crime was committed, that the defendant committed it,
               and that it was committed in Knox County.  This is not a determination of guilt like you see
               decided by television show juries.

            •  EMPLOYMENT: There are laws protecting your employment during your time of service.  A copy
               of relevant law is attached.  If your employer requires a letter each week to prove you attended
               Grand Jury, please let us know as soon as possible.
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