Monday, October 1, 2012

Jury Doody


Hey, all. Bryan here. If any of you noticed that my web presence last week was a little light (tweets, comments, Facebooking, etc), it's because I was being forced to had the pleasure of serving my country in jury duty.

Really, I had no expectations of being picked. They asked me to write down my occupation, and I put "unemployed blogger/writer," assuming they'd peg me as a nosy blabber mouth. But no, they seemed to think that qualified me to be a very "thorough and thoughtful" juror. No, really. I know, I don't get it either.

The trial I got turned out to actually be interesting. It was a brutal stabbing. Basically, a family on their way to the first day of school was backing their car out of their driveway when they stopped half way to go give the dog some water. A car appeared behind them and started honking. The family pulled their car back into the driveway, but the honking continued. The mother got out of the family's car asking what the problem was, and a young girl jumped out of the honking car, looking for trouble.

Brandon and I will be reenacting what happened, with Brandon as the woman from the family, and me as the young girl. Also, this takes place in the hood, so let's just say the dialogue isn't too far off in accuracy.





On second thought, we don't have a lot of time for today's blog entry, so let's skip past their "two-minute verbal altercation" and get straight to the action.








Yeah, that's right, the chick got out of her car and stabbed that lady right in the face, in front of the lady's husband and children, and then asked, "How do you like your pretty little face now, bitch?" Then, instead of calling the police, she called a car full of her gangbanger family members to come over and wave around more knives. But here's the most ridiculous part: Ms. Stabby-Stabs hired a lawyer and plead not guilty by reason of self defense. Seriously, self defense. She said SHE was the one in danger.

Great choice. Let me know how that works out for you when you get out of prison in 10-30 years.

Regardless, I learned a few things while serving as a juror.


1. Trials on TV = really exciting. Trials in person = not so exciting. Remember, you're hearing 10-20 people spend hours upon hours talking about the same 5 minute event over and over and over again. My trial took 3 full 8 hour days. It's mind numbingly painful. Also, you have to sit through a lot of so-called "expert testimony." A LOT.










And don't forget the doctor who stitched up the victim, who was required to spend 20 minutes giving us her full medical background, training, and schooling so that she could be viewed as an 'expert witness.' Because just hearing "she's been a doctor for 25 years" definitely wouldn't have been enough for me!


2. Law and Order will have you believe that most lawyers are fast talking, quick witted, Johnnie Cochran types that are ready for a verbal battle. Unfortunately, most real lawyers look like they could be used car salesmen and are one lost case away from an eviction notice.



3. During deliberation, people will disagree with you, not because they're "unique individuals bringing their own life experiences to the table" like the lame jury pamphlet tells you, but because they're idiots.







Yes, badgering a juror into changing his or her vote is technically "illegal," but being an idiot and wasting everyone's time when I'm really hungry and cranky should be illegal.

In the end, justice prevailed, and while I wouldn't have volunteered willingly, it was an interesting experience. For those of you wondering, yes, that's what really happened. Here's the news story I seemed to miss because I don't own a TV, which actually made me an even better candidate for a juror. Mental note: get TV service again.


Ever been on a jury? Was it awesome, or was it horrible?

Cheers and stay classy, friends,
Bryan

Beer: Dos Equis Amber
Music: Mumford and Sons

58 comments:

  1. Next time, maybe say that this case would make a great blog entry...or uh say they just need you as a jury as you and your 13 multiple personalities are more than enough to make a fair assessment of the case?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wow! I've never been on a jury. Least it was kind of interesting...?

    ReplyDelete
  3. Managed so far to avoid that pleasure. So did you get paid while being entertained by gruesome blood soaked knife stories?
    Only wondering knowing how you are a poor starving blogger/writer

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Here in the USA, if you get jury duty, it's your employer that's responsible for paying you $50 per day for every day you serve. Since I don't have an employer... I didn't get a single dime. In fact, if you count the gas money I spent (it took 45 minutes to get there each day and 45 back) technically *I* paid to be there. Thanks, justice system. :(

      Delete
  4. I used to get picked every year by some misguided jurisdiction. I didn't mind Federal as those cases are usually more interesting but I served on a city trial once of a woman driving her Yukon down Interstate 35 in Dallas with her kids in the car with no working headlights at 2AM. Totally boring except for the mad rantings of the (nutbag) mom. I got paid a whole $12.00 for that one.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I got picked to sit on a jury for four months when I was only nineteen years old. The trial was a long, messy, drawn out disaster. It was such a train wreck, it inspired me to write my first book. What a NIGHTMARE!!

    ReplyDelete
  6. $50 per day!?! That's more than I'm currently making. So it's not like My Cousin Vinny? That's disappointing. I've been called for jury duty twice but not chosen to be on a jury. At least your trial had a crazy face stabbing incident and it wasn't like the McDonald's coffee spilling in the lap trial.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Hmmm...I should start checking my mail. I wonder if I've ever been been called up. Let's assume not and further assume there is not a stiff penalty for not showing up.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I watched the news clip on your link. What a terrible incident. So was the accused mentally ill or high on crack or something? And has she been sentenced yet? I'd be interested in knowing what jail sentence she receives. When you and the jury convicted her, was it on the attempted murder charge or a lesser offence? Oh, I'm just full of questions!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Ah, our fine justice system at work. I'm a "retired attorney" and was actually chosen to sit on a murder trial once even though I knew the DA, the judge, and two of the key witnesses. Are you freakin' kidding me?????? Thank GAWD, the guy pleaded guilty at the 11th hour and we all got sent home.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Every time I get a summons the trial gets called off. Thank god for that because out here in the sticks the biggest problems are poaching and meth use! Oh..and water rights fights- I might want to be picked for one of those, they're pretty good!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I've never been on a jury. Whenever I'm in a courtroom I'm sitting in the defendant's chair. My wife served on a jury once, in which they had to watch a video of a young girl getting fisted (yes the whole entire fist) in the vagina by other older girls. They watched the video several times...just to make sure it was a fist!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Never have got summoned for it and hope I never ever do. They have to find me first, none of my mail comes to my current address. I'll take law and order any day over that. What a crack pot of a woman.

    ReplyDelete
  13. First I got a good laugh when I read your post, especially this "He looks a little "rapey"" but then when I saw her face and read her description, ""When I went to touch my face, my entire hand went inside my face," my heart broke for that lady. Glad you guys found her guilty.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I got the Phoenix Wright reference.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Idiots commiting the crime, idiots in the jury box. Idiots everywhere and an election coming up. Sometimes, you CAN see the wreck before it happens...

    ReplyDelete
  16. That's insane! Never been on jury duty myself. Looks like fun though :|

    ReplyDelete
  17. I'd actually like to be called for jury duty. I was called for jury duty when I was working a (60hr) part-time job which sucked because I didn't get paid for my missed days. But now that I make salary, I'll get paid to sit around and (hopefully) do nothing. Granted, with my luck I'd be sitting in on the case of the Maniacal Condom Snatcher or something equally as lame.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Ugh. I HATED jury duty. I was bored to tears, and we had a hung jury 'cause two older white gentleman kept saying the guy was guilty just because he was black. There was no proof of his guilt. All hearsay. I wanted to stab those two men in the face.

    ReplyDelete
  19. That's nucking futs! Holy prison sentence batman.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I've never been called for jury duty. I always thought it would be an interesting experience. Thanks for the play by play!

    ReplyDelete
  21. I feel your pain. I was picked to sit on a jury in 2010 and it lasted 2 weeks. GRRR!!! There was absolutely nothing about the case that was cut and dry. It was a medical malpractice with 4 defendants. I suffered...and I was hungry...and I had to deal with stupid people on the jury. Some of the jurors actually turned it into a black/white issue because the plaintiff (who died) was black and some of us jurors didn't want to give the children what they were asking.

    I watched the video clip of your trial and the woman who stabbed the other woman looks like a total gang banger. Cut and dry and lock em up.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Excellent reenactment, better than court TV. I have managed to avoid jury duty so far and I hope to continue doing so.I'm not sure I would ever be picked, I tend to have a pretty low opinion of everyone, especially lawyers and criminals.

    ReplyDelete
  23. So far I have managed to avoid jury duty because of my kids. One time when I got called in, I actually had to take them with me, but that was long ago before they were in school.

    On the plus side, you did get paid to sit around for a few days, even if it wasn't enough to pay for that dinner.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I didn't get paid a dime to be there. Based on gas money, I actually had to pay to be there...

      Delete
  24. Ugh, I hated jury duty the one time I had to do it, mostly because it wasn't criminal court, it was a bunch of people who didn't pay their credit card bills. At least yours was fairly interesting :).

    ReplyDelete
  25. Before I moved to NJ I served on a DWI case in NY. It was my first time and I actually enjoyed it but you're right, it's nothing like what you'll see on TV.

    ReplyDelete
  26. That play by play struck me so funny, I was dying of laughter. How can you possibly make a senseless stabbing funny? But yet you did!

    I was summoned once but didnt get on. I'm enough of a dork that I was actually disappointed. Maybe it was the pleading looks I was giving the lawyers that made them excuse me?

    ReplyDelete
  27. The research surrounding witness testimony and coercion of guilt is really fascinating, actually. Not to say that the defendant wasn't guilty in this case; that seems unlikely. Using peer juries of people who go with their "gut" feeling and likely don't have the psychological background to make reasonably sound judgements is, imo, a serious flaw in the justice system.

    So I actually have total respect for that 12th juror.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Next time you should brag about how your readers would love to hear about such a gruesome case and be sure to pronounce a lot of words incorrectly (the second part of this won't always work; it depends on the state you're in).

    I've never been on jury duty (which I just realized I can actually do now; shit) but I had a teacher in 5th grade who had it. She was gone for about a week and when she returned, she said that she would have rather been with us. In other words, she would have rather spent eight hours teaching algebra to three classes of 30-something (or 90-100 total, I guess) angsty and loud preteens then go home and grade papers and plan lessons for a few more hours than serve jury duty. That really says something, in my opinion.

    ReplyDelete
  29. I'm with the idiot on this one. I need more evidence. I am not convinced either. Was the stabber hot at all? If she is an 8 or higher than she is innocent.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Fucking hilarious post. The play by play with pictures. Inspired. Great read.

    ReplyDelete
  31. I want badly to be on a jury, but have only been teased so far. First time I was placed on the jury, but on the morning of the trial, they sat us in the jury room for two freakin hours, and then told us that they weren't going to trial after all.

    Second time, I made it on as third alternate, so I got to hear the whole trial, but got dismissed when it was time to deliberate. Had me some judicial blue balls that day...

    ReplyDelete
  32. Well, I mean, you did good right? And.. you got a post out of it. Uh. I feel bad for laughing after watching the news thing so I don't know how I feel anymore.

    ReplyDelete
  33. Hahaha ohhh. That's a lot of blood.

    ReplyDelete
  34. I've gotta say it. You guys put in GREAT performances as the defendant and the victim. I could hardly tell it was you under all that make up! :)

    ReplyDelete
  35. I got chosen once for jury duty, but was working at the sheriff's office at the time. Anyone arrested in the county I was associated with in some way, so I was disqualified.

    ReplyDelete
  36. I was on a DWI case once. It only took half a day.

    I can't figure out why they chose me at all, seeing as to how I am criminally insane and, as it turned out, the incident took place basically right in front of my house.

    A knifing sounds interesting. Sometimes, you just have to put a bitch in her place.

    ReplyDelete
  37. Jesus... What the fuck is wrong with people? GOD I hate people.

    ReplyDelete
  38. I am beyond impressed with the reenactment of the stabbing. That was some quality acting/makeup/costuming. After watching the actual news story, I have to say that you guys really classed it up for the blog though. Kind of like Lifetime does- take something horrible and beyond ghetto and white it down some for the mainstream.

    ReplyDelete
  39. I got selected for an assaulting an officer trial. Bor-ring. It was so cut and dry that it took us all of 5 min of deliberation to come to a consensus. However I did learn that jurors aren't supposed to yell out "Objection!" during the trial. Turns out only the lawyers are allowed to do that.

    ReplyDelete
  40. That's terrible- you mean that crime has really found its way to the ghetto?

    ReplyDelete
  41. Who does that? Stabbings? Really? In the face? What?

    ReplyDelete
  42. As funny as your reenactment was, I can't help but feel bad. She seriously felt compelled to stab her even after they pulled in the car? In front of family? Now what compels a human being to such barbarism? Should we go off into the woods and take part in the hunt just so we can have some cathartic release? Oh deep thoughts run strong in this blog...

    ReplyDelete
  43. BRYAN ~
    I'm a little late getting here, but I'll make up for it with a really good comment:

    First, I'll bet the cell phone Ms. Stabby-Stabs used to call her gangbanger buddies was an... OBAMA-PHONE! You know, one of those "free" phones Obama has made it possible for miscreants and people too stupid to hold down a job to own?

    Second, what the phuck was wrong with the victim's husband???!!! Man, if some bitchcuntwhore stabbed MY WIFE in the face in front of me - [Psst. Technically, I do not now nor have I ever had a wife. But if I DID have a wife, and some bitchcuntwhore stabbed her in the face in front of me...] - I would be all over that bitchcuntwhore so friggin' fast that she would never have even known what it was that killed her in 0.08 seconds!

    Third, ...uh... third... Uhm... I think I'm done.

    Oh, wait, no I'm not! Now I remember. THIRD! The next time you are being interviewed for possible jury duty, try my trick to get off. Tell the lawyer questioning you that you dislike and distrust police officers, and if it comes down to the defendant's word against a police officer's word, you would automatically side with the defendant.

    That's what I said the last time, and the next thing I heard was, "Potential Juror number thirteen, you are dismissed."

    That's how I learned that I can always count on the truth to get me dismissed from jury duty for the rest of my life.

    Try it, you'll like it.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  44. Good God! I have been summoned, but not picked, because everyone pled. How's that?

    ReplyDelete
  45. It sounds like a terrible experience and I'm hoping that I can one day skip out of juror duty if I ever get picked.

    Did you know the reason why they have 12 members is because that how they've always done it? And no one even knows why it was 12 to begin with.

    ReplyDelete
  46. Mumford and Sons. Good choice

    Never been on a jury, but the question you should ask is have I been presented to one...

    Still no fortunately. I don't think I could stay interested even as a defendant.

    ReplyDelete
  47. Haha, I loved the reenactment! I have been down town and waited all day but never got picked.

    ReplyDelete
  48. That trial took three days? Really? Sounds to me like it should have taken ten minutes. Your case was certainly more interesting (and newsworthy) than most, but it sucks that you didn't even get paid for it.

    I hope that bitch rots in jail for a long ass time. Stupid stabby bitch.

    ReplyDelete
  49. Your website is more like familyguy. You have cartoons but not suitable for anyone outside the bars for sure. That lady brandon's tracea bone - everyone should blow that pic and frame it and stare at it all day long.

    About jury duty, legally I cant (not a citizen yet) but got invited twice and had to send strong letter to not send any more requests. And you expect justice system to work and jury to work if they send invite people like this to sit on the jury and deliver justice.

    BTB, why didnt you award the killer one billion dollars, dying by knife stabbing isnt patented? The victim shouldnt have died of stabbing, death by stabbing is patented.

    ReplyDelete
  50. On my very first time to be called for jury duty I ended up serving on a jury of a three day trial that happened to end the day of my 21st birthday. I was anxious for it to be over (and go to legally drink), but would not in good conscience "just side with the majority" (those words were actually spoken) as one of the other jurors was doing.

    It really upset me to witness how some people can't formulate an opinion or don't give a damn! Usually these are the first to cry that "the system doesn't work".

    I was at the point of flinging myself across the table to choke that juror! I hate to say it, but I got on my high horse and pressed them to stop and THINK before casting their vote. I sure hope I racked up some good karma, because if I'm ever on trial I hope there are people who aren't sheep and just follow the majority (unless it's to find me innocent!)


    ReplyDelete
  51. That sounds horrible! I always thought that jury duty would be interesting...

    Yes Mumford and Sons!

    ReplyDelete
  52. Don't know how the husband didn't get involved before it escalated to that.

    I love the Monopoly picture in the background, very classy for a courthouse haha.

    ReplyDelete