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Dozens shocked after being rounded up for jury duty in downtown Edmonton
Julia Parrish, CTV Edmonton
Published Thursday, February 27, 2014 6:03PM MST
Last Updated Thursday, February 27, 2014 7:05PM MST
In a rare move, a number of Edmontonians were rounded up by sheriffs and sent to the Law Courts, after a judge issued a last-minute summons to get a trial started.
More than three dozen people, including Chris Cottreau and Blake Schoug, were met by sheriffs at the Churchill LRT Station over the lunch hour and handed a summons from Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Terry Clackson.
“We get off the LRT at Churchill, and then there, there’s a cop waiting, a couple of them actually,” Cottreau said.
“[They] asked me my age, I told them I was 19 and they handed me the letter and said sorry for the inconvenience," Schoug said.
Justice Clackson made the rare move in an effort to get a four-week trial started – no other details on the trial were allowed to be released – CTV News has learned at least one more juror was needed to start proceedings.
Officials at Alberta Justice were not able to tell CTV News when, and if, such measures had been taken to fill up a jury in the past.
Some contacts at the Law Courts said it may have been at least two decades – others told CTV News they could recall a case in the 1980s when a judge sent officers out to round up potential jurors.
A total of forty people were part of the jury pool Thursday, and nearly all of them were allowed to leave a short time later.
“I guess they only needed one, so they put her on there, and then sent the rest of us home,” Cottreau said. “They gave us a piece of paper for parking and apparently $11 for lunch.”
Before the group left, Justice Clackson thanked the group.
“The exercise you have been part of is a rare occurrence...you’ll all have something to talk about at dinner time,” Clackson said, in part.
With files from David Ewasuk