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Jury Duty

I have it tomorrow but really do not want to go. I'm thinking of calling them tomorrow and telling them I don't have a way of getting there or someone is my family is sick. What's the worse they can do? Fine me?

by Anonymousreply 5911/12/2012

It's really not that bad, OP. Just bring a good book with you and you'll be fine.

by Anonymousreply 111/11/2012

The problem I have is that last time, a year ago, is that I ended up being on call for two days. If it was just a few hours I could deal but I don't want to take of work because I'm on call.

by Anonymousreply 211/11/2012

What happens if you just don't show up? Anyone?

by Anonymousreply 311/11/2012

Did you get your summons through the mail? Was a return receipt requested? If not, they can't prove you received your summons.

That said, I have had the best luck meeting guys on jury duty.

by Anonymousreply 411/11/2012

I made the mistake of responding via their website so they know I got the summons. Should have thrown it out. I really meant to go but this is a bad time.

by Anonymousreply 511/11/2012

You'll have to somehow say you can't be impartial to get out of it.

by Anonymousreply 611/11/2012

If you call them up they will just re-schedule you.

by Anonymousreply 711/11/2012

Just do it and get it over with, jeez!

by Anonymousreply 811/11/2012

Tomorrow is the observed Veteran's Day holiday. I doubt any court is open.

by Anonymousreply 911/11/2012

Just bring up the option of Jury Nullification while you're being interviewed.

by Anonymousreply 1011/11/2012

You can delay it, but maybe you should have done it earlier. Or, call in sick.

I've always hated the voir dire.

You'll love all them lawyers in their suits. And those are just the women.

by Anonymousreply 1111/11/2012

The last time I was on call for jury duty, I was able to call a toll free number or check on the website for the jury schedule. I wound up not having to go to the courthouse at all. My assigned number was excused for the whole week.

I probably won't be summoned again for another 5/6 years if at all. (Southern NJ.)

by Anonymousreply 1211/11/2012

R6 that's what I did last time I had jury city. It was a DUI case. They went through almost 90 of us and asked everyone "do you have any relations with law enforcement?" and many of them did. Relatives, friends, etc and said they could be impartial. When they got to me I said yes, I had numerous friends in law enforcement through my job (I did at the time) and said if the cop had reason to believe he was drunk driving he probably was and he had all the devices to prove that correct and the defendant was most likely drunk. Also backed it up saying I worked with MADD in the past.

I was one of three dismissed. The other two, one had an immediate business trip and another had a relative in the hospital with a bad disease.

All three of us were dismissed by the defendant's side. My jury duty was done on my second day.

Today, the rules are different and it's one day one service but I haven't responded to any summons since they can't fine you unless they can prove you received the summons. Which they can't unless they do it insured mail.

I work freelance jobs and I know for a fact that does NOT excuse you from jury duty. I can't afford to pay my rent being stuck on a jury for weeks at $5 a day. So you choose a side. Either say the cops are always right or you have major distrust of them and favor the defendant and the prosecution will toss you.

I chose the one that was the most true and was done after day two.

by Anonymousreply 1311/11/2012

It's your duty. Unless it's a hardship, do it.

by Anonymousreply 1411/11/2012

[all posts by right wing shit-stain # a removed.]

by Anonymousreply 1511/11/2012

If you're getting selected for a jury, you can tell them you have no prejudices about the case, but the defense lawyer bears a striking resemblance to your worst enemy in high school and you can't bear to look at him.

by Anonymousreply 1611/11/2012

When I was last in jury duty--earlier this year--three ladies were dismissed because they burst into tears. (The judge asked, "Is there anyone who has a strong reason why they can't be a juror on this trial?") You can also say it's against your religion to pass judgement on anyone, but then you might get dismissed for that particular trial and be chosen for another.

by Anonymousreply 1711/11/2012

[all posts by right wing shit-stain # a removed.]

by Anonymousreply 1811/11/2012

Last time I didn't show up they sent me a threatening letter and gave me another date to show up at. So I showed up at that date instead.

by Anonymousreply 1911/11/2012

What court is open on Veterans Day???

by Anonymousreply 2011/11/2012

R19, they can't do that unless they can prove they sent a registered letter that you received.

They're in the wrong legally otherwise. Just sending you a notice and not insuring you got it means nothing.

by Anonymousreply 2111/11/2012

As someone who used to work in the criminal justice system, may I just say that you all are really just pathetic? Do you even realize that our entire system depends on the participation of conscientious, intelligent jurors? And since this is DataLounge, I'm going to go out on a limb and hazard a guess that you all are probably more intelligent than the average slob who gets called in for jury duty.

But oh no, the intelligent ones always make up excuses about why they can't serve or why they can't be fair, and voilà, the juries that decide most criminal cases (including, perhaps, the aggravated assault case against the career criminal who mugged your best friend at gunpoint or the sexual molestation cases against the perve who abused the children at the day care center to which your sister used to send your niece) can't add two plus two. No wonder so many guilty people are acquitted and yes, even a few innocent people are convicted.

Man up and do your duty.

by Anonymousreply 2211/12/2012

Claiming that you didn't receive the summons is not an acceptable excuse to not show up, and the court is not obligated to prove that you did receive it.

by Anonymousreply 2311/12/2012

[quote]You'll love all them lawyers in their suits.

Frumpy cheap suits on unhealthy looking grey-haired sad old state college lawyers with ponytails.

by Anonymousreply 2411/12/2012

I don't understand why our justice system depends on the participation of the unwashed AMATEURS that we call jurors. In other countries, people apply to be jurors and have to attend courses in jurisprudence. Here, any idiot off the street suddenly decides the fate of strangers.

And then you have jury dynamics. When I was last on a jury, a middle aged elementary school teacher tried to coerce everyone into voting the defendant, arrested on a bullshit charge, guilty.

by Anonymousreply 2511/12/2012

[quote]And since this is DataLounge, I'm going to go out on a limb and hazard a guess that you all are probably more intelligent than the average slob who gets called in for jury duty.

The Datalounge Limb has Dutch Elm Disease and a rabid squirrel who plays with his nuts all day.

by Anonymousreply 2611/12/2012

What would heppen if everyone skipped out on jury duty, then demanded jury trials when arrested, and those juries skipped, then theirs skipped.

You could just say you believe in jury nullification. Once I said, truthfully, that I was more likely to believe a cop than a suspect, but last time I just stumbled in there, tired and aging (prematurely), asking if there was a hardship provision, and they sent me home.

Recently I just listed all my medical conditions on the return card. Supposedly, I needed a doctor's note, but I guess when they saw my litany of issues (none terrible, but all really annoying and making it difficult for me to function as a juror), they excused me.

I don't think either side would want someone on the jury who doesn't want to be there. You could wind up sabotaging a case out of spite.

by Anonymousreply 2711/12/2012


I like our system over the professional-jurors, as that's too close to a bench trial.

The randomness and diversity of juries keeps the system more honest.

On another note, I think we should just select the supreme court by lottery (weighted to favor those who are qualified), as that would eliminate politics. Can someone in Club 18 post that as a new thread btw?

by Anonymousreply 2811/12/2012


You answered your own question.

Imagine if that woman had become a professional juror. Someone like you offered a need check and balance against that type of abuse.

by Anonymousreply 2911/12/2012

28 and 29,

Perhaps my issue is particular to my part of the country, but I was appalled by the stupidity of my fellow jury members. (Not to mention, I was the only one who either hadn't been convicted of a crime or wasn't related to someone who had.) These people were serious, racist fools, and it disturbed me that four of them were ready to separate this man from his kid (single dad) over a bullshit charge.

Now, I am not a fool, but wouldn't the justice system run a bit smoother if the people deciding had some expertise: had judged 100 criminals a year, instead of 1 every few years? I mean, there is a value to expertise.

by Anonymousreply 3011/12/2012

R25, in the U.S. Constitution one of our protections is that the accused has a right to trial by a jury of his peers. That's us. It's an annoying, but necessary, responsibility of being a U.S. citizen. We are asked so little. We are asked to vote, and to serve on jury duty when called. There is never a "good time." You just do it.

It's usually not too onerous a task unless you've been called to the federal courts. Those trials can last a long time and you have to be "on call" for a week. When I was summoned for federal court, I was assigned a number to call in every day for a week to check to see if I was needed.

by Anonymousreply 3111/12/2012

Our peers are racist morons. I wouldn't want to be tried by them.

by Anonymousreply 3211/12/2012

R22, I thought intelligent prospective jurors were automatically disqualified during voir dire.

by Anonymousreply 3311/12/2012

"I made the mistake of responding via their website so they know I got the summons. Should have thrown it out. I really meant to go but this is a bad time."

I'm a steady freelancer, I've had two accounts for the past six years. Years ago I did get off jury duty, because my boss at the time wrote a letter stating I was on a two year contracted assignment, which was the truth. In fact, I ended up staying on contract for that company for another eight years!

A few years ago, when I was contacted for jury duty, I made the mistake of answering the third form they sent me. It's not a summons, it's just a basic form, asking if your understand English etc. The third form was threatening, they said since I had ignored the last two, they stated I'd be fined, IIRC, $1,000 if I didn't reply.

Then a few months later, I received a call-in summons, I never called.

A few months ago, I received another form, I ignored it. Now that I've voted they will track me down again. The form actually states how they select you for jury duty: through taxes, voting and, well, unless you are totally off the radar (working off the books, not filing taxes etc), you will be bothered about jury duty.

I actually sent them a letter with the form I did respond to, I explained I was the care giver to my ill parents (true, I try to see them daily).

I also listed that I suffer from migraines, which I do, I also get occasional vertigo attacks. These illnesses could disrupt a case if I am serving and unable to show up. It meant nothing writing that letter, I guess they required a doctor's note. I was still sent the call-in summons despite the added letter.

Years ago, even partially deaf people were required to serve. My father has always been hard-of-hearing due to losing an ear drum in his 20s, this was due a severe ear infection. He had served many times and actually enjoyed it.

The jury selection system is absurd. Forcing a man who could barely hear to serve? My father told me the judge yelled, "CAN YOU HEAR ME?" after one of the lawyers explained to the judge that my dad was nearly deaf.

As if everyone would be yelling during the trial for my dad's benefit?!

by Anonymousreply 3411/12/2012

Serious question to legal insiders:

Why isn't jury information kept confidential from the defendant?

When I served on a jury, during the jury questioning, each prospective juror was called by full name, asked where they and their spouses worked, and how many children they had, all while the defendant was listening and taking notes. Why isn't this considered dangerous for the jurors?*

*One of the three ladies who got dismissed for crying told the jurors near her that she was afraid the defendant might find and hurt her if he was judged guilty.

by Anonymousreply 3511/12/2012

i wouldn't want any of your loser/liars voting on the outcome of my life, if i was unfortunte enough to face jury. You're all a bunch of whiney, bitchy liars. Man up and do your service.


by Anonymousreply 3611/12/2012

I'm still waiting to hear what court is open today, Monday, November 12, Veteran's Day (Observed). As far as I know all government offices and services are closed at every level, from Federal down to local municipalities.

Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

by Anonymousreply 3711/12/2012

I live in Massachusetts. If you don't show up for the appointed jury duty, you risk being summoned to court to defend your reason for not showing. You could get a fine, but most people simply agree to show up for another jury duty appointment.

The best thing to do is show up if you really can.

EVERYBODY thinks they are too busy. In my case, I don't mind doing it, but the location is a big problem for me. I hope to get it moved again to a courthouse I can actually get to.

by Anonymousreply 3811/12/2012

You don't have to serve. They don't send out summonses registered mail. You can always say you didn't get the summons. There's nothing they can do about it.

by Anonymousreply 3911/12/2012

[quote]There's nothing they can do about it.

Tell that to the marshal who comes to collect your ass for failing to appear.

What a bunch of selfish pricks, lying and deceiving to get out of serving. As someone mentioned, so little is asked of us as part of our civic duty except to vote and show up for jury duty.


by Anonymousreply 4011/12/2012

OP i cannot believe you didn't think of the Liz Lemon defense.... just don that white dress and glue 2 cinnamon buns to your ears. quick dismissal.

by Anonymousreply 4111/12/2012

Not trying to insult OP but having a few criminal defense attorneys in the family, the truth is that intelligent, thinking and sharp people NEVER get chosen for jury duty. That's a fact.

If you get chosen to serve, the defense have determined you to be dim enough to have the wool pulled over your eyes. Being chosen to serve is actually an insult. Sorry.

by Anonymousreply 4211/12/2012

r25 and r24 are correct. The dumb ones get chosen. Another fact of life, almost all elementary school teachers are dumb. You'll never find a smart one.

by Anonymousreply 4311/12/2012

[quote] If it was just a few hours I could deal but I don't want to take of work because I'm on call.

Um, then don't. If you have to leave work to go into jury duty they will understand.

by Anonymousreply 4411/12/2012

[quote] I made the mistake of responding via their website so they know I got the summons. Should have thrown it out. I really meant to go but this is a bad time.

Why didn't you postpone it for a later time?

by Anonymousreply 4511/12/2012

As a former prosecutor, I can tell you, that yes, most defense attorneys try to get rid of anyone they see as intelligent. But that being said, defense attorneys and prosecutors only have a limited number of peremptory challenges to strike people that they *think* will be biased against their side. On the other hand, both parties have an unlimited number of for cause challenges to strike people who clearly state that they couldn't be fair and impartial jurors.

Since the defense will try to strike all the smart, professional people, having a jury pool with loads of smart, professional people becomes that much more important as the defense will then run out of peremptory challenges and the jury will include at least some intelligent people.

One last thing. In many large cities where muggings and robberies are still fairly common, gays are often targeted as "easy" targets. Yet another reason for gays in particular to do their civic duty and serve on juries.

by Anonymousreply 4611/12/2012

The only time I was picked for jury duty was in Miami and that was when my mother was very ill with cancer. I was only about 20 or so at the time and did not know what to do exactly. So, I called my (now deceased) mother's oncologist and she was kind enough to inform that I could not help my mother, go to work, and go to jury duty all at the same time basically.

I'm far older now and all. But, if you have a legit excuse then they don't mind or anything as near as I can gather. I also think that there is some rule (it might vary from state to state) that if serving jury duty would create a financial hardship then you can ethically get out of it.

Explore your options ethically, OP. You might have a proper out which won;t harm anyone.

by Anonymousreply 4711/12/2012

I had jury duty [murder trial] back in April and I fretted about it for weeks but when I went it was over pretty quick. I said I knew one of the witnesses. The judge said you can go. He also let someone go when they stood up and said that the defendant paved his dads driveway.

by Anonymousreply 4811/12/2012

When I was asked about my opinion about the slim facts of the case during jury selection I told the truth. All of the other potential jurors where talking bullshit.

When we went back to the waiting room to see if we were selected, I was called up front and asked to leave and given a pass.

by Anonymousreply 4911/12/2012

I served regularly for many years (civil, criminal, four or five times total) so when I was summoned in the period that I actually was caring for my dying mother, they totally gave me a pass. Couldn't have been nicer on the telephone. Oddly, I haven't been called since, even though that was five years ago....

What goes around comes around. Do your civic duty! One no-show will probably just get you another summons, but don't press beyond that.

by Anonymousreply 5011/12/2012

Alert: The courts only call on the people who respond to jury duty. At least in CA. I didn't answer them for 15 years. Then I decided to go and see what it was like. I had to come back for two days. The first day, they settled on two jurors. The next day, those two jurors didn't show up. Nothing happened to them. The court just went back into the jury pool and started over. The courts don't have the money for a "Jury Police."

by Anonymousreply 5111/12/2012

My one and only jury selection was about a drug case.

When the other potential jurors were interviewed they all said "I hate drugs and know people involved in that." They were ALL given a pass which I think they wanted.

I would have actually liked to serve on the jury but I ran my mouth too much and was also dismissed. I felt sorry for the defendant as I don't believe addiction is a criminal act.

by Anonymousreply 5211/12/2012

Over the years I've been through the jury selection process a handful of times, and I'm convinced that they only want jurors that never watch or read news, are unaware of current events, have no opinions about anything, were not educated beyond high school, and can sit passively looking at whomever is speaking while daydreaming, like an all-day church service.

by Anonymousreply 5311/12/2012

"i wouldn't want any of your loser/liars voting on the outcome of my life, if i was unfortunte enough to face jury. You're all a bunch of whiney, bitchy liars. Man up and do your service."

Are you willing to pay my freelance rates of $300 to $450 a day? I didn't think so. The amount paid to serve is a joke. What happens if you have to serve on a major case which goes on for weeks or months? Care to pay my mortgage? Perhaps they can gather up some retirees who have lots of time on their hands.

Freelancers, and people who work per diem, should be excluded. I have valid reasons for not serving, as do many others.

This country needs to start having legal aliens start serving, if they can live here, they can serve! Legal aliens own businesses here, make great salaries, buy houses etc yet they never have to serve on a jury.

"Tell that to the marshal who comes to collect your ass for failing to appear."

No one will appear to collect anyone's ass. NYC is in dire financial straits, they aren't going to find money in their budget to have marshals gather up people who ignore their jury summons. Don't be ridiculous, sure they threaten you in their stupid questionnaires, but I've never heard of a marshal showing up to cart off a person to jail for failing to reply to a jury summons!

by Anonymousreply 5411/12/2012

[quote]but having a few criminal defense attorneys in the family,

I wouldn't admit to that...

by Anonymousreply 5511/12/2012

Go serve and do your civic duty!

Quit being so important, and special, you're not. Everybody does jury duty, which is why the system works. You'll live buttercup.

by Anonymousreply 5611/12/2012

I don’t really think it’s fair for me to be in a jury because I can read thoughts.

by Anonymousreply 5711/12/2012

[quote]Do you even realize that our entire system depends on the participation of conscientious, intelligent jurors? And since this is DataLounge -

Exactly! You're trying to urge a Datalounger onto a jury. Are you some sick fuck who gets pleasure when an innocent man is condemned to death?

by Anonymousreply 5811/12/2012

Philadelphia here. Last I was called we were told "courts are so backed up that it's unlikely you'll get dismissed". We ALL got picked. And the cops went to pick up the no-shows, and fined them $500 on the spot. They take this shit serious here. I will say this: really liked my experience. Was on a criminal trial for about 8 days. The jury pool became very tight, and we even had a BBQ a few months after.

by Anonymousreply 5911/12/2012
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