jury duty

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    Apr 10, 2014 4:54 AM GMT
    Argh, I have jury duty tomorrow. I actually like jury duty, but I have to be there at 8 am. Being retired I've been going to bed at 2 am and getting up at around 11 am. I've set my alarm for 6; I'm a slow mover in the mornings.

    The second trial I was a juror on I never understood what the outcome was for the defendant. The guy had had a trial for shooting someone; he was a night guard and some guys kept hopping over the fence and stealing supplies from a lumbar yard and he shot one of them. That trial had a hung jury which meant that he got off. But then his defense lawyer "raised a doubt" about his mental competency. In California (and probably elsewhere) there is the usual insanity plea, where they were crazy when they committed the crime, and then they also have to be mentally competent during the trial, in order to defend themselves, help their lawyer, etc. and that's what this trial was about; his mental competency. Why they couldn't just have a shrink evaluate him and declare his competency or lack of I don't know.

    Anyhow, in the trial there were 3 lawyers; one for the state trying to prove he was mentally incompetent, and at the other table was another state appointed lawyer trying to prove he was mentally competent, and sitting with him was one of the deputy district attorneys. And that's where the defendant sat; he wanted to be found mentally competent. But you'd think with a DA there that it would have been to his advantage to be found mentally incompetent. Very weird. That was when I was raising puppies for Canine Companions for Independence and I brought my dog with me every day and the judge was ok with it. Everyone loved Cubby! Everyone loves golden retrievers.

    Have you ever been a juror on an interesting case?
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    Apr 10, 2014 4:58 AM GMT
    I've had jury duty, but never got selected.
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    Apr 10, 2014 5:00 AM GMT
    This will be my 5th time. Two of them I was on a trial. Both were frustrating.

    The last one I am SO GLAD I didn't get picked. Some woman was on pain killers and had some drinks (I think) and ran over and killed 2 kids and the mother was there and saw it. That would have been too heart breaking.
  • AMoonHawk

    Posts: 11406

    Apr 10, 2014 5:03 AM GMT
    I've been called up for jury duty but just end up waiting in the waiting room half the day then they tell me to leave. I don't know why they even bother sending me a summons for jury duty. I think they just like to waste my time, but I never complain, because it is time off of work.
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    Apr 10, 2014 5:04 AM GMT
    Ugh, I forgot about the time I reported a guy who was jacking off behind me on the BART train. I could have papered the walls of my bedroom with all of the subpoenas I got because they kept rescheduling the trial. Each time I got a new subpoena since I was the witness.
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    Apr 10, 2014 5:06 AM GMT
    AMoonHawk saidI've been called up for jury duty but just end up waiting in the waiting room half the day then they tell me to leave. I don't know why they even bother sending me a summons for jury duty. I think they just like to waste my time, but I never complain, because it is time off of work.

    Yeah, same here. We're lucky our employers paid us; some people didn't get paid and that sucks because what the state gives you in compensation is basically nothing.
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    Apr 10, 2014 5:10 AM GMT
    I've only been asked to jury duty once and was chosen from the pool to be on a jury. I was dismissed at the break halfway through the first day of the trial.
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    Apr 10, 2014 8:43 AM GMT
    I lost my jury duty summons and then changed address :-)

    I sued my roommate though? Does that count?

    Yay :-)

    Also I like how your story was about Cubby :-)
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    Apr 10, 2014 9:07 AM GMT
    I got summoned to be on a grand Jury. but when I got there, my juror number was not picked. so I was off the hook.
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    Apr 10, 2014 9:39 AM GMT
    I have been pretty lucky. The only time I got called was when I lived in a county with a pretty large pool. As soon as you got on one jury, you were excused from the pool for five years. Where I live now, the pool is so small that you get stuck for a whole month and they can call you up again the next year. So far my number hasn't come up though. Both of my parents got called multiple times.

    The time I got called, I managed to get on a jury the first day, but it was a close thing - they rejected me from the first two. (Lawyers don't like people with advanced degrees, I guess.) The trial was the next day, so I was done in two days. icon_razz.gif

    The trial itself was stupid. It was a drunk driving case with no evidence. I guess nowadays, they would at least have video from the squad car, but this was way before that was available. It was just the word of the defendant against the word of the arresting officer. We thought that they were both lying or exaggerating. Lawyers on both sides spewed a lot of nonsense that didn't mean anything, called a bunch of witnesses who weren't there, and generally insulted our intelligence and wasted our day. Innocent until proven guilty, so we let her go. It didn't make me feel any better about the criminal justice system.
  • kew1

    Posts: 1595

    Apr 10, 2014 10:54 AM GMT
    I've been called up once & had 3 cases. We get called up for a 2 week period, although if a case we've been selected for goes on longer we're stuck there.
    1st, assault (gay bashing)
    2nd, so boring I can't remember it.I think it lasted one day,it was 28 years ago.
    3rd, conspiracy to burgle. The defence barristers were Nigerian & had such strong accents that the judge, witnesses & jurors only understood about half of what they said.





  • SENCGuy1

    Posts: 247

    Apr 10, 2014 11:07 AM GMT
    I've been called twice. Served on one trial that lasted a week involving insurance. The second time the judge made me sit in the courtroom all day because I honestly answered a question. I guess he thought I didn't want to serve. The judge was known to have a serious case of black robe fever and was very impressed with himself...I wasn't.
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    Apr 10, 2014 11:22 AM GMT
    got the jury summons in the mail call in but was never selected.

    think this is a good thing
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    Apr 10, 2014 2:07 PM GMT
    I served on a jury for a civil case once. It was so boring I swore I'd never do it again.
    But then years later I was selected for a criminal case. It was fascinating. I got tohandle brass knuckles. The defendant fired his lawyer and wanted to defend himself, just like you see on TV. It was hysterical.
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    Apr 10, 2014 2:27 PM GMT
    mindgarden saidIt didn't make me feel any better about the criminal justice system.

    Every time I've been on a jury and the one time I was a witness I've felt like the goal of the lawyers is simply to win, at any cost, not to see justice done. Very discouraging.
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    Apr 10, 2014 2:31 PM GMT
    Snaz saidAlso I like how your story was about Cubby :-)

    My seat was closest to the witness box. Cubby was lying on the floor under my seat. Every time a witness came up to get in the witness box he'd start wagging his tail, which meant vertical since he was lying down and it would thump against the floor. That always got a laugh.
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    Apr 10, 2014 2:32 PM GMT
    Lumpyoatmeal said
    mindgarden saidIt didn't make me feel any better about the criminal justice system.

    Every time I've been on a jury and the one time I was a witness I've felt like the goal of the lawyers is simply to win, at any cost, not to see justice done. Very discouraging as a juror.

    Well, gee, that's a given.
    I'll never get over the fact that it's OK for a defendant to tell his lawyer he's guilty and they'll still waste time and money on a trial.
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    Apr 10, 2014 3:03 PM GMT
    I've been on jury duty so many times it's not even funny but always get the boot by the attorneys. Got as close as to just about to sit in the chair in the jury box, literally my ass was inches from touching it, when the judge thanked me for my service and gave me the boot! I guess my associates/employment/profession don't match the attorneys desired candidates icon_sad.gif
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    Apr 10, 2014 3:07 PM GMT
    eb925guy saidI've been on jury duty so many times it's not even funny but always get the boot by the attorneys. Got as close as to just about to sit in the chair in the jury box, literally my ass was inches from touching it, when the judge thanked me for my service and gave me the boot! I guess my associates/employment/profession don't match the attorneys desired candidates icon_sad.gif

    How long ago was that, if I can ask?
    Nowadays no matter what you say, they put you on the jury.
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    Apr 10, 2014 3:12 PM GMT
    JohnSpotter saidI served on a jury for a civil case once. It was so boring I swore I'd never do it again.

    Oh yes.
    I served on a jury in Brooklyn, a civil case. A woman had slipped on the subway stairs and was suing the city. New York sets aside a lot of money to just settle these nuisance suits but this time they decided to fight it. The whole case turned on whether the metal tread on the stair was worn down 1/16th of an inch (acceptable) or 1/8th of an inch (cause for tort relief). One entire morning of the trial was taken up by the cross-examination of a city employee who was there to testify that the reason her office had not complied with a discovery request was that they had just moved and the requested documents were somewhere inside one of 100 cases of documents still awaiting unpacking. ONE. WHOLE. MORNING. Nowadays those docs would all be on a computer but this was long before computers became universal.
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    Apr 10, 2014 3:27 PM GMT
    JohnSpotter said
    eb925guy saidI've been on jury duty so many times it's not even funny but always get the boot by the attorneys. Got as close as to just about to sit in the chair in the jury box, literally my ass was inches from touching it, when the judge thanked me for my service and gave me the boot! I guess my associates/employment/profession don't match the attorneys desired candidates icon_sad.gif

    How long ago was that, if I can ask?
    Nowadays no matter what you say, they put you on the jury.

    It's been many times in the last 10 years and most recently past 5. Nope, they don't always want everyone. Once they review your answers to the questionnaire, they boot some faster than you can say 'yes, your honor'.
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    Apr 10, 2014 10:47 PM GMT
    That's interesting. Do you know what you're saying that's getting you booted?
    I've seen people declare that they're prejudice but the judge just asks them if they can be logical enough to put their prejudices aside. If they say yes, they're on the jury!
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    Apr 11, 2014 12:02 AM GMT
    I got summoned 4 times so far.

    1st time - got on a drug-dealing case, verdict guilty. The case lasted a week. Deliberation was the most frustrating part; it took all day.

    2nd time - called in the whole week but never had to go in.

    3rd time - left after 2 hours because judges were having a conference

    4th time - sat in the assembly room all day until dismissed.
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    Apr 11, 2014 12:25 AM GMT
    Only been called to jury duty once in my life, here in Florida. I submitted through my doctor my extensive medical history, indicating that I might not be able to make it through a trial without being medically dismissed.

    I was taken off the list, not sure if permanently. Even if I did appear for challenges, once I revealed I had a military law enforcement career most defense attorneys would dismiss me. And if a cop was on trial the prosecution would dismiss me.

    If it was revealed I'm gay then the prosecution would most likely dismiss me, or defense depending upon the case. So I'm not ever gonna see jury duty. A good tip for any guys here who don't want to be on a jury, if you don't mind being officially outed.

    Actually I might enjoy being a juror, at least hearing & evaluating the evidence. But I'd likely clash with ignorant, uneducated fellow jurors during deliberations, who made up their minds the first day of the trial, or even earlier.

    No, on balance I don't think I want anything to do with our broken US judicial system.
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    Apr 11, 2014 12:33 AM GMT
    owl_bundy saidgot summoned last year october and it got cancelled. HAHA!!! fuck jury duty. essex county courthouse and jury management, kiss my ass. fuck them motherfuckers. i applied there for a job for many times and even hollered at them for volunteer work but they fronted on me. the past 9 years i came and went, they either said that they were never hiring or they would call me back but they never did. they refused to give me a chance. fuck them.

    Government jobs aren't easy to get anywhere. It's a super secure job and the turnover rate is practically zero. You have to wait for someone to retire or die and there is a HUGE waiting list.

    Nothing personal I'm sure. icon_confused.gif