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Memorable excuses from potential jurors
For the record
barry wilkes
Barry Wilkes is the Liberty County clerk of superior court and administrator for the countys state, juvenile and magistrate courts. - photo by File photo

One of my statutory jobs as clerk of the courts of Liberty County is to maintain the jury list of the county from which superior and state court civil and criminal jurors are chosen for jury duty at random by an automated system.

I also manage jurors during the selection process.

At the onset of jury selection, persons on the panel from which the jury is to be selected are required to provide “identifying information” for the benefit of the parties and attorneys involved in the case. All potential jurors are asked by the judge to state their name (that is, the name the person wants to be called); where in the county they reside (not a specific address, but in which city or community the person lives); their occupation or, if retired, their vocation at the time they retired; spouse’s name (if the person has one since it’s generally not good to claim a spouse when you don’t have one); and, if applicable, the spouse’s occupation.

I don’t encourage anyone to chance saying anything inappropriate while serving on jury duty since the process involves serious matters and merits serious answers, and the presiding judge may cite any person for contempt of court for disrupting the process. However, over the 32 years while I have served as the clerk of the courts of Liberty County, there have been some things said by jurors that, whether intended to be funny or not, caused other jurors to chuckle. Here is a sample of some of those that I remember:

“My wife is a housewife. She doesn’t work.”

“My wife is a domestic engineer. Actually, she’s the engineer, and I do the domestic work.”

“I’m not married, but I’m available if y’all know somebody interested.”

“I’m a full-time babysitter, guidance counselor, law-enforcement officer and bookkeeper — you know, what used to be called an ‘educator.’”

“I’m not married. I was but, thank God, he left me for another woman.”

“I stay at P.O. Box 123, Hinesville.”

“My husband has been retired, well, all his life.”

“I’m a communication specialist. My wife says I’m not, but that’s what I get paid for.”

“I live in Hinesville with my three children — a son, a daughter and the man I married ...”

“I have a husband but, hopefully, tomorrow, in this very courthouse, the judge will sign papers to end my agony. Hallelujah!”

“I retired from civil service at Fort Stewart. Now I’m just a servant who’s civil and does whatever his wife tells him.”

“I work for the county. ... Well, not all the time, but enough to keep my job.”

“I am a professional artist. So, judge, y’all just mark me down as unemployed.”

“My wife of 31 years, (name omitted), is director of human resources and chief executive operator of our household.”

“I’m a grossly underpaid and unappreciated domestic goddess.”

“I work for my wife, children and grandchildren, but my trade’s roofing.”

“I’ve had three careers and retired from them all. Now, I mostly drink and watch soap operas all day.”

“I’m not married ... but my baby’s mama is (name omitted).”

“I wipe noses and behinds at a local day care.”

“I’m a professional Facebooker, although, sometimes, I find time to be the secretary, bookkeeper, receptionist, janitor and all-purpose gopher for our family business.”

“I am a nurse. I work in the ICU at (name of hospital deleted). I’m one of the ones you love if you make it and one of those you can’t complain about if you don’t.”

“I’m married to (name omitted). We have five children. None of them are mine, and most of them she wouldn’t claim if she had a choice.”

“I am a supervisor at (name of agency omitted). I don’t know what my wife does because, honestly, I’ve never seen proof that she does anything.”

“I’m a college student studying at (name of college omitted). I have class tomorrow tonight, so I hope y’all pick me because I can use the gas money.”

“I don’t work. I did. Now, I sit at home, doing nothing, waiting on the flimsy excuse of a check that I worked all my life for — my FDR check.”

“Let me see, do y’all want the name of my wife or the woman I live with?”

“Your honor, I’m an apostolate. It’s not my job, but it’s what I do and what I’m getting paid for one day.”

“Judge, I’m a shrimper. I work for the (name omitted) bank. Lately, I ain’t catching enough to eat, much less pay the bank.”

 “Me and my wife have seven children. Three are mine, and four I ain’t sure of.”

“I’m a master cosmetologist. I can clip your hair, your finger- and toenails, and do your makeup.”

“You could say I’m a TV critic since I was laid off at (name of company omitted) and can’t find work anywhere.”

“I work for the city of (name omitted) to supplement my income. Since I’m retired from the U.S. Army, civil service and law enforcement, I needed something to supplement my income because my wife has a spending habit.”

“I’m Adam Jones (name changed to protect individual’s identity). … My wife is Anna Barrow-Jones (name changed to protect individual’s identity). She’s a modern, hyphenated woman.”

“I stay at (address omitted) in Midway, but I live in Hinesville.”

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