As he reported for jury duty on Wednesday morning, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan joked that jury service might be a respite from politics. But in the end, he was not picked for a jury in Anne Arundel County.
The Republican governor was among dozens of potential jurors who spent the morning waiting, waiting and waiting some more at the Anne Arundel County Circuit Court in Annapolis to find out whether they’d be needed for a jury.
Shortly after 11:30 a.m., Judge Laura Ripken, who was presiding over the day’s criminal docket, arrived to the jury waiting room to tell the group assembled that their services were not needed.
“I’m sort of disappointed,” Hogan said as he joined a stream of Anne Arundel residents leaving the courthouse now that their jury duty day was up.
He added: “I’ve got to go back to the other boring job. I thought I was going to have some fun stuff." And then Hogan walked around Church Circle to the governor’s mansion.
Wednesday was the second time that Hogan has been called for jury service since he was elected in 2014. In 2015, he spent a morning in the waiting room with other potential jurors before being dismissed.
As he arrived to court, Hogan noted that in 2015, he was initially called for jury duty on the day he was sworn in as governor, and was rescheduled. This time, he was initially called for jury duty when he was in Salt Lake City, Utah, being sworn in as chairman of the National Governors Association.
“I don’t know who is doing the scheduling, but they’re pretty good at it,” Hogan said. “They were nice enough to reschedule me for today."
Hogan joked that serving on a trial may be a welcome reprieve from his job as governor.
“I’m kind of hoping I get a long trial, and maybe I can get a few weeks away from the day job,” Hogan said.
The governor happened to be entering the court house at the same time as Del. Luke Clippinger, chairman of the House of Delegates Judiciary Committee. The Baltimore Democrat’s day job is as an assistant state’s attorney for Anne Arundel County.
The two men shook hands and Clippinger promised the governor: “I will not be picking you today.”
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Clippinger actually did not have any trials scheduled Wednesday, though other prosecutors’ cases on the docket included potential jury trials for cases including charges of assault, traffic violations and trespassing.
“You never know, I might be a good juror," Hogan told Clippinger. “I don’t think anybody’s going to pick me."
Hogan then entered the building and went into the jurors’ waiting room along with dozens of other potential jurors.
Prospective jurors were afforded periodic breaks as they waited to see if any of the jury trials would happen. During one break, Hogan walked down the courthouse hallway and chatted with people and took photos.
On another break, he stopped by the licensing office and posed for photos with two couples getting married, April Smith and Michael Butler of Glen Burnie, and Amy Zoeller and Cody Thompson of Annapolis.
“I wish you many years of happiness together,” he told Zoeller and Thompson.
Jury service was different in one respect for the governor, compared to other Anne Arundel County residents. He had with him a small posse that at one point included multiple aides, his chief spokesman, a photographer and at least three state troopers from his executive protection detail.