Former US President Obama reports for jury selection in Chicago

Reporters outside the Daley Center hoped to catch Barack Obama on the way in to report for jury duty on Wednesday. | Mitch Dudek  Sun-Times
Reporters outside the Daley Center hoped to catch Barack Obama on the way in to report for jury duty on Wednesday. | Mitch Dudek Sun-Times
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09 November, 2017

After arriving early to perform his civic duty, former President Barack Obama was eventually dismissed from jury duty Wednesday morning in Chicago.

Timothy Evans, the presiding judge of the Cook County chief judge, told county commissioners weeks ago that Obama would serve in November, but would not say when.

Before he left, Obama went around the room to greet his fellow jurors, some of whom anticipated his arrival and brought books for him to sign, Evans said.

On Wednesday, Obama did get the prospective juror experience of sitting through a decades-old, 20-minute video in which Lester Holt- now the anchor of NBC Nightly News but back then on local news -explained the ins-and-outs of jury duty. He obliged them and posed for photographs, Evans said. In 2015, former President George W. Bush answered the jury duty call in Dallas.

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Obama was seen shaking hands once he arrived in the building. The official, who is not authorized to speak about the former president's jury duty, spoke on condition of anonymity.

Obama, who now resides in Washington, D.C., has been active in various endeavors for his new Obama Foundation, and has also teamed with the other living former presidents in raising money for hurricane victims in Texas, Florida, and Puerto Rico.

Obama, only one of the would-be jurors at this stage, will be reportedly paid $17.20 a day for his service.

Nor is Obama the first famous Chicago resident to be called to jury duty. Mr. T was not chosen to sit on a jury.


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