PoP Observations From Jury Duty

Last week and yesterday I had the pleasure, nay honor, nay torture, nay duty to serve on a jury. I get called up like clock work every two years but normally I never get picked because I’m too good looking or too short or something like that. But anyway, I was thrilled to get picked this time, initially thrilled that is. I can talk about it now because the verdict was rendered yesterday. So I went down on Wed. for selection and this is a god awful time period. If you get called I highly suggest you bring your entire stack of unread magazines because you’ll finally have the time to read them. I arrived at court at 8:00 am and didn’t get selected for the jury until 5:30 pm. Ok, so this was a criminal case where the defendant was accused of selling drugs (crack cocaine) for $45 to an undercover police officer. The trial itself was actually quite interesting. But you’d think this was a fairly open and shut case, yeah? Ha, ha, ha. No, it wasn’t. The defendant was sitting in a car next to two undercover police officers and was busted about 3 minutes after the purchase. So what’s the problem? Was his coat grey or black. It doesn’t matter that the defendant was 6’5″, otherwise wearing the same clothes and located on the exact unit block where the crime took place. But following is my favorite concern from a fellow juror. When my fellow juror was examining the evidence bag during deliberation there were two tiny drug bags. And his concern: “that’s not $45 worth of crack.” Additional concerns included entrapment, claims of a set up by the police and concern that a gun was not found on the defendant because all dealers carry guns. Thus a 1 hour deliberation turned into 10 hours. Thankfully reason or exhaustion finally won the day – Guilty. I think even the judge was surprised it took us so long to deliberate. As the judge was thanking us for our duty he practically laughed with a huge smile on his face as he said “you obviously took your duty very seriously.”

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