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Jury Slacker Ordered To Carry Sign: ‘I Failed To Appear For Jury Duty’

• CBS News
A prospective juror in a fatal drunken driving crash case who left during jury selection has been ordered to stand in front of the Lake County Courthouse the next two Mondays with a sign that says, “I failed to appear for jury duty.”

Court officials did not release the man’s name, but the 22-year-old told Judge Thomas Stefaniak Jr. he wasn’t thinking when he left after lunch during jury selection Dec. 5 for the trial of Jeffery Cleary of Valparaiso, the Post-Tribune reports.

 

3 Comments in Response to

Comment by Ed Price
Entered on:

Suppose that you are a reasonably conscientious, and somewhat intelligent, freedom-loving American. Now imagine that you are called to jury duty. How are you going to feel when you are required to answer all kinds of questions in advance, questions just to see if you are eligible, that seem to strip from you most of your freedom to make an honest jury decision if you do become part of the jury at some trial.

Remember, this guy needs to cover his butt, in conscience honesty while answering pre-jury questions, in true honesty that won't prejudice his life when it comes to jury action if he becomes a juror, in simple understanding of the ramifications of being a juror, in understanding the ways in which the judge would try to motivate him into some unconscionable verdict movement, and, oh, all sorts of little things that he probably didn't expect when he got called for jury duty.

He simply didn't think to say something like, "I don't understand," or, "I don't understand, and I don't understand what it is that I don't understand," thereby disqualifying himself for the position of juror. He was just trying to take off from a system that was attempting to keep him - potentially, in his thinking - from making some jury verdict that he would consider justifiable.

These days, you need  a reasonably high intelligence just to operate truthfully in the legal system. Most defendants, in even simple traffic cases, do not realize that they have perjured themselves all the way through court thing, by lying about something and not understanding that they were lying.

So, I don't blame this guy for being mixed up about what he should do, and then trying to cover his butt by saying that he just wasn't thinking.

Comment by Ed Vallejo
Entered on:

It might not be 'cruel', but is this considered a 'usual' punishment? 

Comment by Powell Gammill
Entered on:

“I wasn’t really paying attention,” said the man.

Judge Stefaniak said the man was “the very person who should be on a jury."

yup


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