I've dreaded this from the day I registered to vote for the first time. I've tried to come up with an excuse for not serving, but it's no good... I'm stuck, I'm serving, no two ways about it.
I've never heard GOOD experiences with jury duty. So that's what I'm asking for here. Does anyone have any good jury duty experiences to share? Or am I doomed to the horror stories. The best, that is to say the least negative stories I've heard involve fellow jurors who don't even look at anything like, oh, the LAW, the EVIDENCE, the TESTIMONY... or even the instructions to the jury.
Well I thought the same before I actually served on a Jury last year.
Simply put I had a blast.
Ok the first day sucks they herd you into a room then you get assigned to a court room then they call you up ask question and either pick or dismiss. If dismiss you go to another court room rinse and repeat. Those not chosen got to leave I think on the afternoon of the second day.
Those chosen sit for a 3 or 4 day trial (normally)
I served on a drug trial for a guy accused of selling dime bags of coke. I found the entire process very interesting and we had a bunch of very cool and different folks on the jury.
Judges keep great hours so dont be surprised to find yourself going in at 10 and leaving at 3 with a 1-1.5 hour lunch.
Sure beats work for a few days especially if the trial is interesting.
I only had to sit on a jury for one day, the judge's father died and the new judge wanted to reconvene 2 weeks later, when more than 50% of the jury had vacation plans already. We were dismissed.
The second time I went and didn't get selected for a jury the first day, and then they sent me home and told me to come back in 3 years. (Back In Black)
Delissandra Splitshadow - Marauder of Clan X
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I was acussed of passing a stopped school bus. Well a month after said incident was supposed to have occured is when I got the ticket. I went to court to fight it, got shafted in district court and the judge tried to make an example out of me, so I appealed.
During most of the week I spent several hours in court waiting to talk to the DA, having to wait on his ass is pretty irritating. Got a continuence and went back to have the judge appoint a jury, have state present evidence then he dismissed the case. Go go stupid DA that wouldn't just drop it.
Anyway the point of this is that during the week I saw a few trials go on. Usually they only took 1 day or less, and I left by lunch time. But it was really interesting to watch, this is a small county also, only 40,000 population. Most of the stuff was pretty mundane. There was this one great case where the cop pulled over this guy for drunk driving. He works with computers and had been at work all day, plus he has a limp in 1 leg(both were used as explanations for glassy eyes and a staggered walk), it was really a cool trial. Hara
I guess you could always pick the verdict as being opposite of what it should be, and try and convince others to go along with you. (This is a joke and should not be considered)
My one experience with Jury Duty was a 2-day and out situation. The one trial I might have had to sit for was a double murder that may have taken 3-4 weeks (according to the judge). Since I was in school at the time, and my employer didn't compensate for Jury Duty ($10 a day, + mileage), I begged out on hardship.
The judge dismissed me.
Other than that, it was two days of reading a book.
Now that I work somewhere with Jury leave, I kinda hope I get called again at some point.
I got a summons one time. Spent two days on my ass. I didn't even get called as a potential juror. I won't do jury duty again in my county.
In other counties in my area, you just need to be on call, able to show up in under an hour. I wish my county would pull their heads out. You don't need to kill someone's day to have them as potential jurors.
I was in the jury of an insurance case once when I was in college.
A woman was pregnant when she had a wreck. She was sueing the other driver for punative damages (mental, there was no physical injury to herself or the unborn baby). She wanted money for the mental anguish she had.
Granted, I'm sure she really did experience a @#%$-ton of anxiety, fear, even terror right after the wreck and until she was assured by doctors that her baby was ok.
I do have a big problem with the idea that getting money for this type of mental anguish is "right" though. I call @#%$ and greed on it.
Anyway, I took two things away from my experience:
1) Almost 100% of the rest of the jury was scary stupid. None of them were professionals, and all of them appeared to have been taken straight from the audience/stage of a Springer show. It was plain scary, and to think that someone's fate could lay in the hands of such a group of uneducated, unintelligent people scares the @#%$ outta me.
2) No one wanted to give the woman any money at all. I, however, was more interested in "sticking it to" the large insurance company than preventing the woman from getting punative dmg money. (something like a State Farm or so was actually the defendant, not the other driver)
I was the only one who really wanted to give the woman anything, so everyone agreed to award her a pitiful $1000, which was many hundreds of Ks less than she asked for.
I now see the error of my ways. If I had it to do over again I'd surely award the woman nothing. Lesser of two evils if you ask me. Giving her $1k accomplished nothing, other than perhaps covering her legal fees. I'm sure the insurance company considered it a victory, and it was a wash for her.
She should have gotten nothing, IMO. OR, if I really cared about sticking it to the big insurance corps, I should have argued to give her full award....which I now realize just means raising all of our premiums...
Of course none of the other jury members thought to make this argument to me during deliberation...
I showed up in the morning at about 8am, brought my copy of The Fellowship of the Ring with me to read. By the time I left that day I was half through with it.
I was one of something like 40 people chosen as potential jurors in a child rape case. I didn't end up being chosen as a juror because the lawyers picked all the people ahead of me to serve on the jury or as alternates. I was #37 or 38, something like that.
It was sort of interesting to get a peek into how the justice system works, but I think that trial would have been pretty rough to sit through. They said they had extensive medical pictures and stuff that the jury would have to look at. I'm not sure I could have handled hearing about a kid getting raped for the 2 weeks they said the trial would take.
Civic duty and all that, if I would have been chosen I wouldn't have cheesed out of it. I'm just glad I wasn't.
I am going to register in the next couple weeks. I doubt I will ever even vote, as I have absolutely no faith in our electoral process. As a bonus, I hate both parties and feel they are both lying self serving groups.
I have heard some pretty bad stuff about jury duty, and the morons that one finds within them.
They had a guy for drunk driving when my friend served. They had video, blood, breath, sound, everything.
2 women on the jury hung it. they felt the guy was too nice to have ever done something like that. *sighs*
On a side note, what is the punnishment if one jury member pummels another?
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