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(WSFA) – The Equal Justice Initiative says it has filed a civil rights lawsuit claiming that District Attorney Douglas Valeska  illegally excluded qualified African Americans from serving on juries in Houston and Henry counties. The lawsuit alleges that for decades District Attorney Douglas Valeska blocked African Americans from serving as jurors on serious felony cases, including capital cases.

The plaintiffs are five African Americans who state courts previously found were illegally excluded from jury service because they are black. The lawsuit seeks declaratory and injunctive relief, including ongoing federal court monitoring of jury selection in Houston and Henry Counties.

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