Former President Barack Obama returned home Wednesday when he reported for jury duty in Chicago. However, by noon the Cook County Chief Judge Timothy Evans told reporters that the former president would not be serving, reports said.

Obama climbed out of a black SUV in a parking garage underneath the Daley Center — the premier civic center of the City of Chicago in Illinois — around 11 a.m. EST. As he arrived,  a news helicopter hovered overhead. Obama had a tight security around him as he rode a private elevator, accompanied by his Secret Service personnel. He went up to the 17th floor, where he was greeted by Evans, Chicago Tribune reported.

During a press conference held after the 44th president departed, Evans said Obama was assigned to a panel that was not called. The chief judge added that Obama was gracious to others present to fulfill their civic duty, according to CNN.

Obama's appearance electrified the courthouse; people from outside the courthouse desperately tried to get a glimpse of Obama, who wore a sports coat and shirt but no tie. The public tried to take pictures of him on their cellphones, reports said.

Twitter users had a field day reacting to the news of Obama turning up for that most somber of civic obligations: Jury duty. Some posted photographs from the courtroom where their friends were present at the time Obama came, while some just adored the former president's humility.

A security guard at the courthouse warned people inside the building not to click photographs of the room where Obama would sit, however, once the former president entered, everybody started pressing themselves against the glass doors clicking snaps of him. 

"He’s gorgeous!" said court clerk, Sonal Joshi, who had rushed upstairs to catch a glimpse of the former president, according to Chicago Tribune.

Those who were present inside the room where Obama walked in including would-be jurors were excited as the former president shook hands with them and signed copies of his book they had brought along.

They also took out their phones to take videos and photos. Evans later said that Obama obliged but did not pose with potential jurors taking selfies.

Obama is not the first U.S. president to turn up for a civic service that some Americans want to avoid. Obama's predecessor, George W. Bush responded to a jury summons in 2015. Even though Bush was not selected to serve as a juror, photographs showing him smiling and posing with citizens became a hit on the social media, Daily Nation reported.

The Obamas currently live in Washington, but they maintain a home in Chicago, the city in which he kick-started his political career.