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Frequent calls give Baltimore a resentful jury pool

There was a time when city residents only had to do jury duty every 18 months if they reported for duty and weren't selected for a trial. If they served on a jury they weren't called for another three years.

Now residents are called for duty every year. My co-worker received a summons for late summer after having served last fall. When she called the courthouse she was informed there was a "new system" that did not include the dates of residents' previous service, so that many people were being called back within a year.

Instead of imposing on the same pool of people, may I make two suggestions? One, since many people neither drive nor are registered to vote, why not start using residents'[Social Security numbers to select jurors? And second, why not start punishing those who don't show up for jury duty instead of those who do?

An angry, resentful jury pool is not gong to serve the cause of justice.

Michelle Alston, Baltimore

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