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Social Media Being Used Against Potential Jurors

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posted on May, 22 2011 @ 10:09 AM
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After a grueling nine days, a jury of 7 women and 5 men have finally been seated in the case of Florida vs Casey Anthony. This case has never lacked for jaw dropping, drama filled moments which now extend to the seating of a jury as well. During this extensive process, one prospective juror was found in contempt and fined $450 for speaking to a reporter for the sole reason of wanting to get out of jury duty and on the last day a juror had to be excused after a mentally unstable woman blurted out in court "But she killed somebody anyway."

Having watched this entire process I was most struck by what appeared to be more of an interrorgation of potential juors, one being questioned for over 3 hours and the role social media now plays even into the courtroom. As each potential juror was brought forward, lawyers on both sides were furiously clicking on their laptops digging into the lives of private citizens there only to do their civic duty. It is very interesting to see what you get when you pull 200 people from the general public. Many of their private and most embarassing moments were relived on the internet and national tv and extending to their family and friends. DUIs, charges for paraphernlia, one juror relived how his sister had tied up their dad.

Facebook and Twitter postings of potential jurors were extensively researched by lawyers on both sides. One juror was excused for cause because he had posted over a year ago on Twitter: "Cops in Florida are idiots and completely worthless" after he had been hit by a drunk driver, called 911, continued to follow the drunk driver to yet another bar, called 911 and received zero police response. Another juror was excused after it was revealed he had posted on Facebook about being a potential juror in this trial: "Book coming soon lol ."

Be careful what you post, it can and will be used against you in a court of law.

Trial begins 9 a.m. Tuesday May 24, 2011

Juror Fined $450

Woman Yells Out In Court w/Video

AP article on Social Media in Jury Selection

Want to read up on the evidence? Here is a link to the document dumps in the case - the most revealing being the IMs to Tony and the texts messages to Amy Z.
Document Dump-Evidence




posted on May, 22 2011 @ 10:38 AM
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This is a non-story. If I was on trial for murder, I would certainly want a fair jury and not one that had written postings all over the web about how guilty I was. People should know that anything written can never be erased entirely but it certainly doesn't mean one is not able to post opinions any longer.

The bottom line is this: if you want to get selected for jury duty, I wouldn't post your opinion of the case on the web.



posted on May, 22 2011 @ 11:07 AM
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reply to post by lpowell0627
 


It's such a non-story that the Associated Press wrote an article on it


Social media is finding it's way into every aspect our lives and now into the justice system. A fair and impartical jury is every Americans right. In the situation with the Facebook poster who stated, whether joking or not, a book was in the making was a good call. The other potential juror who Tweeted was a good viable juror - the prosecution did not want this guy because he was a young, single male which was the target juror for the defense (duh-fense in this particular case.) I feel the prosecution used his tweet as cause for biased against the police as simply an excuse to get rid of a juror they did not favor. I can assure you that if this tweet had been made by a female with a young child it would have been used by the defense.

This thread was intended to show just another way social media is impacting the landscape of society.



posted on May, 22 2011 @ 11:31 AM
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Originally posted by Whisper67
It's such a non-story that the Associated Press wrote an article on it

Well, to be fair, the AP also supplies us with the latest info on our favorite celebrities and all kinds of other essential "news".

I see this as the latest, greatest way to avoid jury duty. Just a quick note on your Facebook page about how the legal system sucks, and voila! You're excused.



posted on May, 22 2011 @ 11:47 AM
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Originally posted by subject x
Well, to be fair, the AP also supplies us with the latest info on our favorite celebrities and all kinds of other essential "news".


Well you do have a point there! Perhaps I should have titled this thread: How to Avoid Jury Duty 101


That's exactly why one juror spoke to the media after being told not to do so. He straight up told the judge he did it on purpose to get out of serving. Mission accomplished however it cost him $450 to be paid in $50 monthly installments.



posted on May, 22 2011 @ 12:36 PM
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Originally posted by Whisper67
Perhaps I should have titled this thread: How to Avoid Jury Duty 101

Maybe you should have. It probably would have garnered more views!


If that fella had just not run his mouth, he'd have gotten away with it, no problem.

I think that that jury members should just be picked, and not picked over. I thought a jury was supposed to be 12 random citizens, not 12 citizens who think/believe just the way a particular lawyer wants them to. I guess it was just to simple the way it was...



posted on May, 22 2011 @ 01:28 PM
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reply to post by subject x
 


If you were black, and on trial, wouldn't, at the very least make sure those judging you aren't racist?



posted on May, 22 2011 @ 01:42 PM
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Originally posted by Whisper67
reply to post by lpowell0627
 


It's such a non-story that the Associated Press wrote an article on it


Social media is finding it's way into every aspect our lives and now into the justice system. A fair and impartical jury is every Americans right. In the situation with the Facebook poster who stated, whether joking or not, a book was in the making was a good call. The other potential juror who Tweeted was a good viable juror - the prosecution did not want this guy because he was a young, single male which was the target juror for the defense (duh-fense in this particular case.) I feel the prosecution used his tweet as cause for biased against the police as simply an excuse to get rid of a juror they did not favor. I can assure you that if this tweet had been made by a female with a young child it would have been used by the defense.

This thread was intended to show just another way social media is impacting the landscape of society.


This is a non-story, the court part that is. The real story here is the fact "Social media is finding it's way into every aspect our lives and now into the justice system" as you said. Go for a job now days and they will "Google" your name to see what you may and may not have posted on line. A friend of mine got a job a car dealership and a few days after starting the job the boss came up to him with a printout of a web page the had pulled from the net. He lost his new job because of something he posted on the net 4 years before. He would not tell me what the posting was about. So be careful of what you post it can and will come back to bit you.



posted on May, 22 2011 @ 02:34 PM
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reply to post by fixer1967
 


That I agree with wholeheartedly. Everything we complain about, we do to ourselves and encourage it to continue. We are our own worst enemy.



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