December 1st, 2005, 06:22 AM
Well I had Jury duty today Boy was that a trip. Let me tell you about it. (Oh by the way the case is over so I can chat away now, without getting into trouble) Well Iíve been on alert for about 2 weeks now calling in to see if I had to show up the next day and nothing till the last day, I forget to call and I head off to work at 7:30 and get to my job at 7:50 when I over hear the bob and tom show talking about court. Just then my eyes light up and I grabbed my cell and called the hotline and sure enough I was to be there by nine. Well not too bad I had an hour to kill before I needed to be there. So I get to court and the case is a criminal case. A total of 13 people show up for jury duty and we head in so the prosecutor can decide who he wants to throw out. Two older gentlemen and one younger woman get the boot for no reason.
The case can now begin, Names to remember here are Scott (defendant) Ben, Joe, James, Jason, Nate, and Nicole. Scott is charged with aggravated assault on a minor for 2 accounts (Ben and Joe). Now here is the low down; the prosecutor says that on Sept 30 2004 Scott came home to find his house was broken into. Scott also saw the boys Ben, Joe, James, Nate, and Jason, leaving away from his property and going into a garage. Scott receives a phone call from Nicole a girl that lives next door. She told him that she saw the boys out front of his property and observed Jason break in threw the rear of the home and come out a minute later with something stuffed under his shirt.
Well Scott hears this takes a quick look around and heads over to the Grand Parents home of Ben and Joe, (by the way Scott is 44 years old and the other boys are all around 15 years old) Scott saw Jason leave shortly after returning to his home, so he was unable to go after this individual. Nicole calls the cops while Scott spoke briefly with the kids grand parents. He proceeded to the garage where the kids ran off to, where he finds Ben, Joe, James, and Nate sitting around. Scott approaches Ben and grabbes him by the shoulders and begins telling him he is going to kill him, the Joe steps in and pushed Scott off Ben and into a hole in the floor.
Now thatís the story I basically heard from the prosecutor and the defendantís testimony was a little different on the account that Scott didnít touch anyone in fact it was the boys who assaulted him and ran out of the garage.
Well I sat there listening to each person tell there side of the story and this is what I found out.
1. Ben Ė was unable to give specific detail about what went on that day and said that Scott did put his hands on him but not in a manner that would inflict any pain but did state that he was going to kill him. Also said after going after him he went after Joe.
2. Joe- Said Scott was hitting Ben over and over. Ben then stated that Scott didnít assault him at all. Joe also goes on to say that in fact he goes after Scott and Knocks him down. This makes Ben and Joe testimony sound like lies.
3. Jason was found guilty in the courts a month later on the charge of B&E at Scotts home.
4. Nicole said she called the cops after calling Scott (only credible whitness)
5. Scott, so called mild manner by his attorney goes ballistic when its his turn on the stand making his case look very bad. He was upset about the B&E and the fact that he had prior problems with B&E over the years. If I was the Judge I would have put him in contempt of court.
6. Whoís left? Oh yes, James, Nate, Grandparents, and Jason, Well we all know where Jason went. But that leaves James, Nate and the Grandparents who werenít called to the stand.
Excuses me if I donít get all the little tad bits of info in Iím trying to make this as short and sweet as possible. So any who, like I was saying no evidence was presented in this case except the testimony of the people I spoke about. So being a juror I know that I must be shown proof beyond reasonable doughty that Scott is guilty.
We head into the back room and everyone appoints me as the head (the one who tells the judge the verdict and keeps the jurors on track about the case). So I accept there offer and asked for a raise of hands on a plea of Guilty. 4 Jurors raised there hands, I and a nother Juror didnít.
So why do you feel that this person is guilty? I asked the members. They said that the personís anger in the court room was what turned there idea that he could have in fact committed the crime and the fact that they couldnít believe that 2 young boys could push him down.
I turn to the jurors and said; you make a good point but the fact still stands we have reasonable doughty. If the two other boys where here to testify against Scott and if Ben and Joe didnít lie about what had really happened I would say ok there is a chance that Scott could be Guilty.
We sat for the next 5 minutes talking about the case and I finally said, well all in favor for not guilty raise your hand. Everyone Raised there hand, Crap man, we went from 4 guilty pleas to 6 not guilty pleas in less than five minutes. So I called the bailiff and we went back into the court room. Jurors have you reached a verdict? ďAsked, the JudgeĒ. We have your honor the courts find the defendant not guilty. ďI repliedĒ.
As we walked out the bailiff stopped us and said good verdict, I was afraid you where going to say guilty. I turned to him and said they almost did, and walked out. I can honestly say I felt good to be on the jury and would do it again.
-- The End --
December 1st, 2005, 06:49 AM
ok im a little confused on how you got the other jurors to change their minds from guilty to not guilty?
December 1st, 2005, 06:56 AM
You are inocent until proven guilty beyound resonable doughty. Just because two kids say hey he touched me in a bad way doesnt make it true.
1. there was no fisical evidence of battery
2. the two other people in the room who could have testified didnt (why I dont know) but thats up to the prosecutor to produce.
3. the kids stories where off from one another and they couldnt recall alot of the important details.
So unless the procescutor could come up with any of the above they had to say not guilty.
December 1st, 2005, 07:00 AM
so the jurors at first were gonna convict him solely because he had an "anger outburst" in the courtroom... but you manage to change their minds and make them look at the actual evidence or lack of evidence?
December 1st, 2005, 09:46 AM
Tell me one thing though, you at least got paid for your effort though, i mean i've heard that jury people get paid what they would normally get in a week just to do that one day.?
Is that true or am i missundestanding the whole concept..
Oh and i would of made the case gone on for a few days, that way you get to be sleeping in a kewl hotel at the courts expense..
December 1st, 2005, 03:02 PM
Na you only get about 30 dollars a day
December 1st, 2005, 03:19 PM
Same over here, you just get (pathetic) expenses AND you have to turn up every day though! and wait for the twots to reject you...........I have had 4 weeks of that.
I guess it is a bit different here...............we have 12 jurors............prosecution and defence can both object to 3 each. I guess my rejections were about 50/50................and we are expected to believe in a justice system?
December 1st, 2005, 05:06 PM
yes thats true both sides have 3 rejections they can give without a reason and 3 with a reason and this can be denied by the judge. but the defendants laywer didnt reject anyone.
December 2nd, 2005, 06:28 AM
That's one of the major difficulties with the current legal system--the pittance paid to the jurors is so far below even minimum wage that nobody has any impetus to want to stay as a juror.
This can lead to many difficulties with people saying "Let's get this done and over with"--which only exacerbates the tendency the general public has to avoid thinking at all costs.
No disrespect intended, but I dare say most of the reason that you were able to convince the others to find him not guilty [ by reason of lack of evidence ] is not because they had a revelation of "Innocent until proven guilty" or "we need to have actual evidence to convict him", but because they recognized that you weren't going to back down, and they'd be stuck there until either they caved or you did--the "I'm not getting paid to argue this ****".
Still, good for you for actually using what's between your ears. If only the rest of the world would do the same.
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