Superior Court 1 to take part in state pilot program

Michael Bergerson

MICHIGAN CITY – Jury duty is about to get easier in Michigan City, as La Porte Superior Court 1 has been selected to pilot the state’s new Jury Management System texting and email program.

The Indiana Supreme Court invited just seven counties throughout the state to test the enhanced technology beginning Nov. 18. La Porte Superior Court 1 in Michigan City, having already conducted 17 jury trials prior to then, with three more scheduled before the end of the year, is the lone court from La Porte County participating in the pilot.

”We are excited to have been selected as a pilot court to test the enhancements to the Jury Management System,” Judge Michael Bergerson said. “Enhancements will put this court on the cutting edge of enhancing the jury experience for prospective jurors.”

Other participating counties include Floyd, Hendricks, Howard, Kosciusko, Madison and Monroe.

The specific JMS enhancement being piloted is a court-to-juror messaging system that will allow participating courts to send reminder letters to specific pools of prospective jurors regarding unreturned questionnaires; and send text or email notifications to jurors regarding reminders, cancellations, schedule changes or juror records.

“Courts must provide the opportunity to jurors to opt in for the text/email notifications so potential jurors can be reassured they are receiving legitimate notifications from the court,” the Indiana Supreme Court said in a statement it issued about the new enhancement.

Of Indiana’s 92 counties, 75 already use JMS. The new messaging enhancement will become available to all JMS users in 2020.

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