Have you ever served on a jury trial? If so, what was the charge? What was your experience like -- especially the deliberation and verdict?
I served on a jury hearing a Capital murder case.
The defendant was a real piece of work.
It took about 5 hours of deliberation to get a guilty verdict.
20 years later he is still on death row.
What do you mean the defendant was a "piece of work"?
Do you think 5 hours was a short amount of time or pretty quick?
Apparently this did not occur in Texas.
I hear they're a little more efficient with their death penalty implementations that other states....
He was a piece of work, a scumbag, killed a child and later after convicted he admitted it.
I thought the deliberation was a long time for the evidence offered to us for consideration.
An hour was sufficient to have come to the guilty plea but one holdout just had to be sure. I guess I don't blame her, she had to live with the verdict rendered.
I recently heard of a case in Texas where a Police officer was killed and the defendant was found guilty.
He was on death row in Texas for 32 years.
Can't believe everything you hear.
Yes a civil suit about medical malpractice or malfeasence or something. As a civil case, it only required 7 of 12 jurors to agree. I and another juror disagreed (we were the oldest and youngest members-- me being youngest), but they won their case for many reasons. It was very educational.
I also served on a County Grand Jury for two years which was a real eye opener. Met a lot of great people and a few pieces of pond scum. An excellent experience.
For 2 years?? How on earth..??? You mean, the trial lasted that long?
A grand jury is seated to hear cases to determine if they should even go to trial.
They hear many many cases and determine who is indicted and who isn't.
The term lengths vary I think.
So, not just one trial? Must've been a history lesson I missed.
No, they do not deliberate on a trial, they determine if a case should even go to trial.
District Attorneys often take care of the criminal indictments-- I was on a Civil Grand Jury which is more of a watchdog for county operations including the running of detention facilities and other local government agencies. We looked into the operations of school districts and also actually brought attention to a county official who was 'adjusting' his expense account for his personal benefit at the expense of taxpayers. He was later convicted-- that was rather satisfying.
I see, I have never heard of a Civil grand jury, learn something new everyday.
Grand Juries hear the evidence and determine if their is sufficient cause to indict.
I'm glad it isn't left to District Attorneys, they would indict all day everyday if it meant another term in office.
I live in a small county. The GJ CAN review criminal matters, but generally they defer to the DA. Actually they could review the practices of the DA's office as well. I was thrilled to learn that such a system existed-- real normal everyday citizens could complain about government actions, and the GJ could actually do something.
Sorry MM-- didn't mean to hijack-- it is not like a jury trial-- though in one matter we did take sworn testimonies and depositions.
We usually met briefly each week to review citizen complaints-- and then went out in small groups of two or three to poke our noses into county business concerns. It is against the law to reveal the specifics-- but I did write a hub about the general experience in something about a letter to the Judge.
So...were you paid? I mean, I understand when you're on a jury you receive a jury stipend or something... Were you able to keep your job - so this Grand Jury was like a second job?
It does sound like it would be interesting.
Each Grand Jury decides on a schedule that works best for the group-- some groups meet in evenings. There were some who were retired, some were ranchers or small business owners who managed to take off the necessary time (like one morning a week) Others were part time workers-- I know we had a school bus driver... I don't remember if we were paid, if we were it was minimal.
I served on a jury for a simple case. It seems to me we had to have all jurors agree, but I can't remember for sure.
A woman had a restraining order or something against her boyfriend. She received a phone call and the only thing he said was "Hello?" She claimed it was her boyfriend. It took about 2 hours for everyone to agree it wasn't possible to be sure who was on the other end of the line.
After the hearing, we were informed the boyfriend was in jail at the time of the phone call and couldn't possibly have done it. (for some reason, it was inadmissible evidence)
I was told to show up 3 times, and yet to have to sit through a trial. Each time, we(everyone there) were told to go home. We were simply told we were not needed, and no explanation.
I've been in those, too. Sometimes cases are scheduled for a trial, but if not enough people can be assembled for a jury, the case might be dropped.
If there ARE enough people to select from to form a jury-- sometimes the parties offer a plea bargain, drop charges or settle out of court if they know they will have to face a jury trial. So having a potential jury --even if they are later dismissed, serves a purpose.
I have never had too.... I even own a home but have never had to go do that.... Maybe they no I'm crazy... JUST KIDDING....
Oh no, Rochelle! Not at all. I find your grand jury experiences very interesting.
I also learned something new. I didn't realize they convened GJs for civil trials, either.
Rafini -- that case sounds like it should never have made it into the courtroom. A woman claimed that her boyfriend violated her restraining order by CALLING HER and not identifying himself? Was she in danger from him?
Maybe I am jaded, but it would take a heck of a lot more than an anonymous call (which, apparently, the guy didn't even make since he was in jail at the time) to get anyone (read: cops) here to take action.
Wouldn't you also think they would have verified BEFORE taking it to trial that the boyfriend was in jail at the time?
I served jury duty when car number two in a four car pile-up sued car number three for sliding on a patch of ice and hitting him. The jury figured if car number two wasn't liable for hitting car number one, why should car number three be liable for hitting car number two?
It was pretty mundane stuff. Meanwhile the manager for the business I worked for at the time was in court suing my immediate supervisor, right down the hall. I saw them in the window, and spent much of the next two days wondering what was going on down the hall.
My own jury duty case was pretty cut and dried.
Ha -- I bet you would have liked to be a fly on the wall in that courtroom, or even a juror.But no doubt you would be disqualified because you worked for the same company as plaintiff and defendant!
I've had limited experience with the justice system except for family court. That's a subject for another (or several) hubs.
I got to testify in front of a grand jury in my rape case.
They were going to take it to trial but the guy plead out. At least he did a reasonable amount of jail time.
The closest I've gotten to actually sitting on a jury was getting called in from the main jury room for interview. Wouldn't you know the case involved a home invasion/sexual assault. Waaayyy too similar to my rape case to pass inspection by the defense attorney. Oh well. I really would have tried to be open-minded and fair... Now I will never know what that feels like. LOL!
Yup, I would have loved to have sat in on that trial. Whenever we got a rest room break, I hustled down the hall to peek inside the window. Their case was over before mine was, so I had to return to work to find out what was going on--and even then no one wanted to talk about it.
I actually enjoyed jury duty and would love to serve again.
I've never been on jury since I am not a citizen.
I'm not an American citizen, so haven't served. My mother served on a jury once, years ago in Belfast. The charge was not burglary, although the lady seated beside my mother thought it was, until the descriptions of the sheep were introduced as evidence.
I keep getting called, and I keep doing my best to get out it, postpone it, or to at least get on "stand-by" (which usually means not having to go). Every three years - like clockwork - I get called again!!!!
I'd like to be someone who sees it as my civic duty; but when the court system was absolutely absolutely, void of all truth, justice, and even preservation of my rights and of my children's right during my divorce; I got really bitter about it. So, ever since then I figure, "The court system gave me and my kids absolutely nothing when we most needed it. I'm not giving the court system anything either." (Besides, once they got wind of how absolutely disgusted I am with the court system, nobody would want me as a juror anyway. )
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