The California Penal Code is silent on the matter of providing public input to the Grand Jury. Thus, the Grand Jury is under no legal mandate to make any kind of response to correspondence received. However, the Orange County Grand Jury has chosen to receive such letters to give it the ability to identify areas of government that may merit investigation within Orange County. All correspondence is maintained as confidential and not subject to review by any agency.
However, if correspondence contains an explicit or implicit threat against a person or persons or government entity, the Grand Jury could be compelled to release that portion of the letter.
All letters will be acknowledged. However, action by the Grand Jury may be limited by time, insufficient evidence to warrant a study, or matters not under the Grand Jury’s purview. All letters will also receive a close out letter. This letter may refer the individual to other agencies that may help resolve the issue. Due to the confidentiality of all matters before the Grand Jury, the response will not disclose the details of the investigation or its results.
The filing of a concern does not prevent the individual from filing a private lawsuit or seeking a judgment in Small Claims Court.
The Grand Jury has no jurisdiction to review any matters involving the Superior Court of Orange County, federal or state agencies.
The Grand Jury does not act as an ombudsman for county citizens. However, the Grand Jury will review all concerns and may produce a study on the issue, if the concern is deemed appropriate. Otherwise, no further action will be taken.
The Grand Jury will not take any action on behalf of an individual in order to obtain money owed, to help cancel a debt due, or obtain any other personal relief.
The Grand Jury cannot resolve any issues involving policy. Policy is set by elected officials. Resolution of policy issues may be addressed by contacting the respective public agency.
The single method the Grand Jury communicates with the public is by issuance of the “Final Report” (see California Penal Code §933). These reports may be found in local libraries and on the Grand Jury web site.
The Public Concern Form must be filled out and returned. For security reasons, it cannot be electronically submitted.