Among the new Texas laws as of the first of the month, one on grand jury selection has Grimes County’s District Attorney worried about what this might mean for our local justice system.
Under these new rules, Tuck McLain explains, grand jury members must now be picked at random by a jury wheel, instead of the way things have been before.
McLain tells Navasota News he feels that under the old system, the county managed to get a balanced grand jury but it wasn’t random and through the use of the jury wheel he continues, he sees less balance.
State Representative Carol Alvarado of Houston wrote the law. She tells Navasota News, she felt the change was necessary because she has seen people wrongfully convicted because of unbalanced and sometimes biased juries.
Alvarado says nobody knows anybody’s preconceptions or personal history with a random pick, arguing that through the other part of the law, potential grand jury members can be more thoroughly screened for personal interests and biases. And in the end produce a truer form of justice.
McLain, on the other hand, says he feels the jury wheel will work better in major cities, and hopes it will work out in well here in grimes. But if not, both agree that it should be brought back up during the next legislative session.