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DUTIES

The grand jury is a body of 19 citizens who are charged and sworn to investigate county matters of civil concern as well as inquire into public offenses committed or triable within the county. Grand jury duties, powers, responsibilities, qualifications and selection processes are outlined in the California Penal Code section 888 et seq.

The grand jury reviews and evaluates procedures, methods and systems utilized by government to determine whether they can be made more efficient and effective. It may examine any aspect of county government and city government, including special legislative districts and joint powers agencies, to ensure that the best interests of San Joaquin County residents are being served. The grand jury may inquire into written complaints brought to it by the public.

The grand jury functions lawfully only as a body; no individual grand juror acting alone has any power or authority. Meetings of the jury are not open to the public, and discussions and voting are required by law to be kept private and confidential.

The Penal Code requires the grand jury to:
  • Inquire into the condition and management of the public prisons within the county;
  • Investigate and report on the operations, accounts and records of county officers, departments or functions;
  • Inquire into the willful or corrupt misconduct in office of public officers; and
  • Submit a final report of its findings and recommendations no later than the end of its term to the Presiding Judge of the Superior Court. Agencies to which these recommendations are directed are required to comment.
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