Claremore Daily Progress

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State/Nation

November 1, 2013

Multicounty Grand Jury reconvenes next month

(Continued)

CLAREMORE —

Issues listed in the petition would have been addressed before any other matter, although the grand jury would have the authority to investigate any issue involving Rogers County.
During the Multicounty Grand Jury proceedings a district attorney can present a case to the grand jury with their approval. In those instances, the DA may assist Tilley in advising and presenting the case, according to Dark.
This process is general and does not speak to the circumstances surrounding the investigation into Rogers County. No information about the current investigation has been released to the public.
The grand jury is selected at random from eligible citizens who are then questioned by the presiding judge and attorneys as required by law, according to Dark. 
The jurors will be questioned about potential conflicts or information they may already have about an investigation depending on the case, according to Dark.
“The presiding judge and attorneys ask questions regarding those issues,” Dark said. ”The multicounty grand jury has a system in place for dealing with conflicts.”
Anyone can be called to appear and may have an attorney present at the time, according to Dark.
“As far as witnesses, the multicounty grand jury operates in the same fashion as a county grand jury. Witnesses are subpoenaed and called to testify,” Dark said.  
Witnesses cannot refuse to participate, but have certain rights regarding portions of their testimony, according to Dark.
The proceedings operate in secret as required by state law, Dark said.
Witnesses give testimony under oath and can be charged with perjury if they are untruthful.
Jurors will determine when to issue indictments based on the evidence they have heard, according to Dark.
The Multicounty Grand Jury cannot remove officials from office without an indictment, Dark said.
A Rogers County Grand Jury would have included the authority to remove officials from office.

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