Legislation to allow former convicts serve jury duty heads to House floor
One year after the state legislature restored voting rights for some convicted felons, there’s an effort to allow certain convicts eligible for jury duty. Baton Rouge Representative Ted James says his legislation would allow convicted felons to be called for jury duty once they are off parole or probation for five years.
“It’s another step in fully integrating and removing the stigma from individuals that made mistakes,” said James.
The House Criminal Justice sent the proposal to the House floor after a 9-6 vote in favor. Bossier City Republican Raymond Crews says his constituents are against this bill.
“I do think we should be forgiven and thoughtful and positive, but I also think there are consequences that I’m sorry, they go with you,” said Crews.
But New Orleans Representative Royce Duplessis says former inmates can provide valuable knowledge to the criminal justice system.
“That person he or she is just as equipped to give their life experiences and make a determination because that’s we have the voir dire process,” said Duplessis.
The House could vote on this proposal as early as next week.