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Note: The comments and questions on this page came from people who visited this website. Please feel free to send your comments and questions to Professor Brenner (brenner@udayton.edu). She will respond privately, and may ask permission to post your message on this page. No one's e-mail will be used without first obtaining their permission, and names and e-mail addresses are removed before a comment is posted. Starting in 2002, the responses posted to the site indicate which of us replied: The initials SWB mean Professor Brenner wrote the response; the initials LES mean Professor Shaw wrote the response. We are also putting the year down, to indicate when the response was posted. If no initials appear, Professor Brenner wrote the response.

Can I use a petition to get a grand jury to start an investigation?

Can a citizen call for a grand jury? If this is a process by petition how many people must sign and how is it done?

Response: That depends on what jurisdiction you're in. I believe citizens in some states (California, perhaps?) can call for the empanelment of a grand jury by signing a petition, but I don't know which states allow this. I suggest you call the clerk of your local court of general jurisdiction (e.g., common pleas court, circuit court, district court--the basic county trial court) and ask if this can be  done in your state. If it can, you might ask how many signatures are required, etc. As an alternative you could call the local prosecutor's office and ask them.

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