Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Ladies and Gentlemen of the jury.............

Mr. Silva-Brown had jury duty yesterday, and boy did it suck.

Normally I'm really into being on a jury. Simply put, you are taking part in the criminal justice system using every variable in that jury room to decide the fate of someone's life. It is an amazing experiment in human action and analysis. I was last a juror in 1999 when I was a foreman for jury that was trying to convict a young man for beating up his girlfriend. In the end, it was a hung jury. It was 8-4 that the man was innocent. I voted that he was innocent, but not because I didn't think he did it. I was fairly sure that he beat up his girlfriend, but the reasonable doubt was very "there", especially when the girlfriend testified that he didn't beat her up. That, and the fact that the police did a horrid job gathering evidence, gave me the "reasonable doubt".

This case was different. I was actually chosen as one of the 50 jurors to go into the court room for jury interviews. A court room with no air conditioning. Ahhhhhhhhhh, Ukiah, 112 degrees outside, and 60 people in a tiny court room with no air conditioning. Sounds great, doesn't it. After the first 24 jurors were questioned, and 13 were let go, I was called in the next batch of 10. I found out that the case was an embezzlement and tax fraud case. Borrrrrrrriiiiiiiinnnggggggggg. Then the judge stated that the case could last up to two weeks, with lots of witnesses about accounting. ARRRRGGGGGG!!!!!! Fortunately, I had a valid excuse. I have an English Language Learner conference I have to attend next Monday and Tuesday which was assigned by my principal. I explained that to the judge and was promptly excused. Awwwwwwww, too bad.

Don't get me wrong, I like serving on a trial, but this kind of case will require loads of paperwork, and a whole hell of a lot of boring ass witnesses. Yuck. Hopefully, in another two years, they call me for something a little more interesting.
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