LANCASTER COUNTY, Pa. (WHTM) — The sixth grand jury that will hear testimony in unsolved major crime cases has been summoned in Lancaster County.

District Attorney Heather Adams has announced that an application filed by her office requesting the grand jury to be summoned has been granted.

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“This office will continue to do everything it can to assist law enforcement with the investigation of unsolved cases,” DA Adams said. “While DNA and genealogy research have proven to be a novel and successful way to solve cold cases, this method is not available in every single case. A county-wide grand jury is another effective tool that can be implemented to move these investigations forward and hopefully find answers for victims’ families.”

Residents from the county will be selected to serve on the jury that could air prosecutors in determining whether criminal charges are to be filed. County Judge Merrill Spahn will oversee the jury that will have a total of 38 jurors impaneled (23 permanent, and 15 alternates).

According to the DA’s office, the resources of the grand jury include the power to “issue subpoenas for investigative purposes, compel the attendance of witnesses, compel the testimony of witnesses under oath, take testimony from witnesses who have been granted immunity, require the production of documents, records, and other evidence, and obtain the initiation of civil and criminal contempt proceedings.”

Jury selection will begin on September 6, 2022. The sessions will be held monthly, beginning in October, and continue for 18 months.

This is the sixth grand jury of its kind, with the previous in 1995, 2001, 2005, 2011, and 2017.

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