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carp

Jury Service

Who has done it?

Have done it twice now and sat on 3 cases. Time in court I found interesting to observe how they all went about their work. Sessions were short enough for me to stay focussed, which is no easy task!

Worst part was sitting around in a crowded room with a load of strangers waiting to be called. Also had to walk through the public canteen, where those on trial sat, in order to get to the waiting room.
Heyho

Done it twice. A lot of sitting around I agree. Could be improved a lot
Forest

Did it a couple of years ago on a sad case about a young lass that died in a traffic accident on the motorway. Defence counsel were brilliant, completely changed everyone's view from the start by the end of two weeks.
Grind

I'm always a bit bemused about the whole process of jury selection here.

It seems to me that twelve "notionally upstanding" people should be randomly selected and off you go.

However, it seems as if a pool of jurors are provided and then they are screened by the lawyer types in order to (presumably) get the verdict they're actually looking for.

Seems totally wrong to me, but what do I know?
Late Doors

Never done it but wouldn't mind doing it if i ever get the call.  Old work colleague used to be a magistrate. That sounded interesting
smiling badger

Was asked once but managed to get away with not doing it as I'm self-employed and all that.
Went to the Old Bailey once and listened to a murder case. Was very interesting.
Heyho

Go sworn in on one case, some miggie lads nicking copper cable from dowm stourton power station
.
Get's to near the end of day two and one of my fellow jurors decides he knew one of the accused.

Had to be redone. Total waste of money

First time I did it I was in on a theft case and they brought in a charcater witness. He asked to keep his hat on has he had cancer. Then he siad he had known the accused for years and what a wonderful chat etc etc.

Prosecution lawyer dissed it all with one statement. Is it true the reason you know him is because he is your cell mate in the nick. LOL
Grind

I used to occasionally go to Winchester's court at lunchtime when I was working near there back in 1985.

I don't recall too much of what I saw or heard, although an obvious highlight was hearing a policeman having to read (from his notes!) verbatim that his copper mate said, "We appear to have dropped a bollock!" was worth the price of admission on its own. *

* To be fair, it was free to get in.
Grind

We were respectfully asked to leave shortly afterwards.

* Still sniggers at memory. *
Grind

Seriously though, I can understand people being recused because they are relatives or specifically connected with the case in some way, but any other reason seems, well, unjust to me.

* Just as well I've never been before the beak, eh? *
Heyho

Grind wrote:
* Just as well I've never been before the beak, eh? *


My one occasion was back when I was 16. Someone chucked me a light bulb from the top of the Christmas Tree in City Square and I got nicked lol. Managed to get it reduced to the lesser charge of D&D rather than theft.

Anyway I digress. In court the copper read from his notes and they were a total pack of lies. Apparently I'd resisted arrest, sworn at them etc etc. Believe me you'd never seen a more compliant criminal when they got me. I peacefully walked and got in to the back of their panda car myself.

But the most embarrassing thing was the case after me must have been for prostitution. Let's just say that the public gallery was full of her friends. When I left court my dad turned to me and said 'hmmm are they your friends'.
Cutsyke

Queens NY they walked us over to the court building from a separate waiting area hall alongside some of the accused - gang members who were making all kinds of threats, I was younger then and got into it verbally with one Hispanic guy who'd caught my eye and started to aim his threats at me. That didn't go down well with the court officers. In court the judge was a great pains to emphasize that his courtroom wasn't stuffy like over in England where they wear those stupid powdered wigs etc. When it came to jury selection my opening line was I'm from that place with the stupid powdered wigs. I wasn't selected.
In Newark I spotted a knife outside the court building and told two cops in car about it. They were eating sandwiches and said they'd pick it up later. I was excused from one case after a side bar, after telling the judge I had a had time been objective about drugs due to the death of a friend. Next case was a case involving a kidnapping at gun point. Anyone know anyone affected by gun crime cleared the jury box fairly rapidly, myself included. A good friend, a cop had recently seen his partner shot to death at point blank range. Last time I wasn't picked it was a case where a young guy had car jacket a girl and sexually abused her as she drove. She'd crashed into a cop car after flashing the headlights at them failed to get their attention. He got 12 years, I think. I've looked in the paper online, followed the case. Some of the comments show you how fucked up society is. There are several saying she should have been prosecuted for crashing the car intentionally.
I've spoken to several cops while on jury duty, they never get picked, rightly, I think. Seems a waste of time and money to even call them.
Dock

Never done Jury Service and don't fancy it in the slightest. I'm enjoying some of the stories from other Reggies though.
Frazier Cranium

I did jury service late 1980s and was also called earlier this century but couldn't attend (I wanted to, it beats work).  

The one case I was involved with was a miner, in Selby I think, who whilst picketing was falsely imprisoned, assaulted and wrongfully arrested by two coppers.

It took a week and the case seemed to be meandering in no man's land so to speak ie. no one seemed sure of the truth.  The main witness for the miner lad was a big lomper of a bloke and the miner's counsel didn't want to use him as a witness as he wasn't very bright (I think they said mentally subnormal) but anyway, they decided to risk it as it looked like the case was being lost.  Big guy gets up, he'd been arrested himself and it took three coppers to overpower him so it was clear he could look after himself.  Within minutes of him being questioned, he broke down in tears.  What a man, it was obvious to anyone there that he'd been hiding his own traumas of the time for all that time.

It made the news anyway, as we awarded the miner the highest amount of compensation ever awarded in such a case.  £65k I seem to remember.

The bloke, mild mannered and all that and not a big bruiser or owt, was so emotional at 'winning' that he raced up to us while we were still seated in the jurors' section, me first, weeping and thanking us each for our decision.
Dock

Frazier Cranium wrote:
I did jury service late 1980s and was also called earlier this century but couldn't attend (I wanted to, it beats work).  

The one case I was involved with was a miner, in Selby I think, who whilst picketing was falsely imprisoned, assaulted and wrongfully arrested by two coppers.

It took a week and the case seemed to be meandering in no man's land so to speak ie. no one seemed sure of the truth.  The main witness for the miner lad was a big lomper of a bloke and the miner's counsel didn't want to use him as a witness as he wasn't very bright (I think they said mentally subnormal) but anyway, they decided to risk it as it looked like the case was being lost.  Big guy gets up, he'd been arrested himself and it took three coppers to overpower him so it was clear he could look after himself.  Within minutes of him being questioned, he broke down in tears.  What a man, it was obvious to anyone there that he'd been hiding his own traumas of the time for all that time.

It made the news anyway, as we awarded the miner the highest amount of compensation ever awarded in such a case.  £65k I seem to remember.

The bloke, mild mannered and all that and not a big bruiser or owt, was so emotional at 'winning' that he raced up to us while we were still seated in the jurors' section, me first, weeping and thanking us each for our decision.


Wow. Ta for sharing Codge. Great thread this if you ask me.....I know you won't.

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