Bill to Exempt Law Officers from Jury Duty Sent to Governor

April 19, 2021 | Headlines

OKLAHOMA CITY – A bill that will exempt certain law enforcement officers from jury duty passed the state Senate on Thursday and moves to the governor for his consideration of signing it into law.

House Bill 2746 by Rep. Ross Ford, R-Broken Arrow, would exempt municipal or state law enforcement officers employed in a county with a population of more than 255,000 and federal law enforcement officers from jury duty. The measure provides that municipal or state law enforcement officers in counties with a population of less than 255,000 may serve on noncriminal actions only.

“This protects residents in our communities from losing the services of their law enforcement officers,” Ford said. “Many times the officers are not chosen for jury duty anyway because of an obvious conflict of interest. Being called and having to wait until they are dismissed removes them from duty, leaving their departments and the citizens they serve without public safety services. This keeps them on the job.”

Sen. Joe Newhouse, R-Tulsa, carried the measure in the Senate.

“Our hardworking law enforcement officers have plenty of duties on their plate as it is, and the last thing they should worry about is jury duty, especially since they seldom get selected anyway,” Newhouse said. “This measure allows our law enforcement officers to focus on keeping our cities, streets and neighborhoods safe, priorities I know all Oklahomans can share.”

SB 2746 passed in the Senate with a vote of 47-0.