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Jury Duty

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posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 06:39 PM
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I am currently serving as a district court grand juror. This is the first time I have ever served as a juror and it has been very interesting. In my work as a Child Protective Services Social Worker, I spent plenty of time in court for judicial reviews and in both civil and criminal trials as a witness.

This experience is rounding out my exposure to the judicial system very nicely. A lot of it is pretty routine stuff, but there are cases that make one wonder just how evolved we really are as a species.

I was wondering if anyone here has had the opportunity to serve as a juror and if you feel as I do that this service is both a duty and a privilege.

If you were called to serve, would you do so willingly, or would you do your best to get out of it? Why?

[edit on 2006/7/31 by GradyPhilpott]




posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 06:48 PM
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I think serving on any jury is an honor. Just remember that you have the power of Jury nullification, meaning that if you disagree with a law, even if it appears the person charged did break it, you can vote not guilty. They never tell you that in your juror instructions I think.



posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 06:51 PM
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Yes. I am aware of that. In fact, there is a practice of the police that goes against my personal beliefs of what is right and wrong that is going to prevent me from voting for a "true bill" on all future cases that rely on this tactic. It took me awhile to come this decision, but I have over two months to go.

I can't discuss very much about the specifics now, so maybe I can bring it up at a later time.



posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 06:57 PM
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Originally posted by GradyPhilpott
If you were called to serve, would you do so willingly, or would you do your best to get out of it? Why?


I have often wanted to serve on a jury but never have been called. My wife was once for a traditional malpractice suit against a doctor and she liked it.

As for why, well I would say just for the experience of taking part in our system of justice.

The only real thing that I would not want to do is serve high profile case simply because after the case was over the media would ask to many questions once the case is over.

BTW I hate Court TV I think they put too much of their own spin on trials



posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 07:01 PM
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Originally posted by GradyPhilpott
If you were called to serve, would you do so willingly, or would you do your best to get out of it? Why?


I've never served on jury duty, but if called to do so I would. It's a citizen's responsibility to police their own and serving on a jury is one of the best ways to do that. It's your oppurtunity to make a difference in society that will not only effect the defendant, but could and probably will effect other people.

I agree, serving on a jury is a duty and a priviledge.



[edit on 31/7/2006 by SportyMB]



posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 07:16 PM
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Good topic. Duty and privilege. Have served. God bless citizens who willingly serve, as, if I ever needed a jury I would want such good citizens aboard.

One case I was on, it turned out the poor man was absolutely innocent, and the accusers were lying to cover up their own crime.
I must say I have trouble with DUI. If you're pulled over for driving eratically, admit you were drinking and fail an alcohol test, just fess up, why go before a jury?

Oh, interesting about jury nullification. Do lawyers routinely ask potential jurists if they think a law is wrongly applied or immoral?



posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 07:46 PM
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Originally posted by desert
Do lawyers routinely ask potential jurists if they think a law is wrongly applied or immoral?


Yes the term used for that is known as “voir dire?”

You can find out what it details .here

I am sure there are other sites with similar info and the above is not meant to be a definative answer just an outline for the procedures as I understand them.



posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 08:07 PM
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If you were called to serve, would you do so willingly, or would you do your best to get out of it? Why?

Not quite sure if I would or not, the only problem I have with it,
is that they force you to, and you get in trouble if you don't,
and in my opinion that's unlawful, and sh/could be considered
unlawful imprisonment.

Now, if I were asked to, and was'nt being forced to, than yes,
I would do it, not because I believe it some kind of honour or duty,
as others believe, and I'm not saying they're wrong in believing such,
since we all have the right to believe as we choose, rather I would do
it just to experience something I've not experienced before.



posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 08:15 PM
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Actually, here they are pretty understanding of the hardship imposed by jury duty, but you can't get out of it forever, except under extreme circumstances.

What then do you believe to be the duty of the citizen to the state?

[edit on 2006/7/31 by GradyPhilpott]



posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 08:27 PM
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Originally posted by GradyPhilpott
Actually, here they are pretty understanding of the hardship imposed by jury duty, but you can't get out of it forever, except under extreme circumstances.

What then do you believe to be the duty of the citizen to the state?

[edit on 2006/7/31 by GradyPhilpott]


I guess each state must feel differently about it than, since the only times
I've ever known people getting out of jury duty here (Washington state),
was for medical reasons.

I honestly don't believe we have a duty to the state, rather the
other way around, but if we have any kind of duty, it's to live
the way we want to, and stand up for what we believe.



posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 08:32 PM
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Originally posted by iori_komei I honestly don't believe we have a duty to the state, rather the other way around, but if we have any kind of duty, it's to live the way we want to, and stand up for what we believe.


I'm sure JFK is spinning in his grave.

The future looks bleak if your attitude is common.

[edit on 2006/7/31 by GradyPhilpott]



posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 08:44 PM
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Well, I guess we do have the duty to make sure the government
remains fair, and democratic and working, and not abusing it's power.
Did'nt think about that when I wrote my last post.

If I may ask, apart from jury duty, waht do you believe our duties our?



posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 09:04 PM
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I was called for jury duty in ABQ about 4 or 5 years ago. I actually was part of the pool for a murder trial (a shooting following a traffic accident). I was asked no questions and was not selected for the jury. One of the folks in the pool asked a lot of bizarre questions and made rambling answers to the questions posed to her. If I remember correctly, she was even a friend of the family of one of the prosecutors. She made the jury.

I had a good friend in ABQ who was a juror on a murder/rape trial. She had worked as a social worker at a women's shelter and as a Christian counselor. Her experience was quite disturbing - she said that at least one juror completely disregarded all testimony. They would make up their own story of what was reported, often having little or nothing to do with what was said. Others had made up their minds before one word had been said because (a) they hated the police, (b) they hated lawyers, or (c) they hated hispanics.

I don't plan on committing any crimes at any time, but if I were on trial for anything, I would think very long and very hard about a jury trial.

Beyond that, to answer your actual question, if called for jury duty I would absolutely serve.



posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 10:15 PM
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I was called and served in downtown Los Angeles in 1998. Apart from trying to find parking and waiting to get selected (sitting in the jury pool was extremely boring), and what I perceived as lawyers for each side trying to stack the jury in their favor, which I found kind of slimy/scary, actually sitting on the jury was a great experience.

I was recused from my first case because it involved a bicycle accident, and when the lawyer for the plaintiff asked if I had ever been in a bike accident, I said yes. He asked how it had turned out, and I said I had admitted fault and paid for the damage to the car I hit. That was it for me.

Apparently, the plaintiff had been riding his bike in a crosswalk against the light, and got into an accident with a delivery truck. Turns out he was a porn star, and the impact of his privates with the gooseneck of his bike had caused him a lack of professional function, or so he claimed. He was suing for inability to perform his work functions due to his injury. His lawyer defintely didn't want me on that jury.

I ended up sitting on a violation of restraint case, and voted to convict.



posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 10:19 PM
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I served as a jury last year for the first time, I have a great time and learned a lot from the trial.

It was a case of high profile divorce in my town and multi million dollar state was involved.

After it was over I told my husband that he better don't even think to leave me because the court will give me everything including half of his retirement and investments after been married for so long.


He didn't like the whole thing.



posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 10:33 PM
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Ah, yes, Shots. Now that I think about it, lawyers do quiz us in regards to jury nullification during voir dire. Now I know certain questions are meant to get responses to avoid jn.

Grady, you beat me to it
"And so, my fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country." JFK inaugural address
I heard it spoken as a child and can never forget it.



posted on Jul, 31 2006 @ 11:05 PM
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I have never had jury duty but If a got a letter in the post telling me it was my turn I would step up to the plate. In New Zealand I have the right to vote so there is no reason why I shouldnt put something other then tax dollars back into the system. Note Im not saying that I avoid paying my taxs.

I agree with GradyPhilpott the world is headed for a bad place If people wont give up a there time for jury duty and yet they still expect the right to vote.



posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 12:15 AM
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I've been called for jury duty a few times. One time I got excused by the judge after I said I thought the guy was guilty (of murder). I was a bit surprised that the judge didn't immediately excuse me after I said that. He asked if I thought I could look at the evidence and make my decision of guilty or innocent based on that. I wasn't sure. After I get a hunch, it always seems to be right. I could tell the murderer was looking at me like he was scared of me and was giving him a sentence. He looked even more frightened when the judge didn't immediately excuse me. I read later that he confessed to the murder. It seems a bit strange to speak up and claim you think the guy is guilty but I had a picture of the whole murder in my head. I may have wanted to know if the details matched what I envisioned but to be fair to the murderer, I thought I should let the judge know what I thought (that he was guilty).

A couple of times I was excused due to other conflicts. A couple of times I served but it amounted to just going to the courthouse waiting for an hour or two, then being told we could go home but we needed to stay by the phone and be on call if needed for a possible jury trial. No one wanted a jury trial those two times I was called for jury duty.



posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 02:09 AM
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Originally posted by iori_komei
If I may ask, apart from jury duty, waht do you believe our duties our?


  • Obey the law
  • For men, military service
  • volunteer community service
  • financial support of social causes. Community service can substitute for this.
  • Looking out for family, friends, neighbors.
  • Reporting criminal activity

    How's that for starters, but all these really fall under the rubric of good citizenship.



  • posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 02:12 AM
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    Originally posted by GradyPhilpott

    Originally posted by iori_komei
    If I may ask, apart from jury duty, waht do you believe our duties our?


  • Obey the law
  • For men, military service
  • volunteer community service
  • financial support of social causes. Community service can substitute for this.
  • Looking out for family, friends, neighbors.
  • Reporting criminal activity

    How's that for starters, but all these really fall under the rubric of good citizenship.


  • For the most part, that's actually a very good list, you sir are an admirable individual.

    Is'nt obeying the law though more something you have to do, rather than a duty?





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