It’s finally happened. I figured it would one day.
Eventually the town had to work it’s way through the alphabet, and now my turn to do my civic duty has arrived…maybe.
I’ve been summoned to appear for a jury panel, which means that I may or may not be chosen to sit on a jury. The suspense writer in me is intrigued by the possibility. The practical-can’t-sit-for-more-than-an-hour-or-my-back-goes-into-spasms side of me is a tad apprehensive.
I can’t complain about the timing. I have no looming deadlines, and despite all the crime I write about in my fictional town set in this region, we don’t have any upcoming trials that would go on for weeks on end…at least none that I know about.
So…I’m excited about the opportunity to experience the process, watch the people and take lots of notes for future books!
Your Turn: Have you ever been called to jury duty? If so, how was it? If not, would you want to be?
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I’ve been called to jury duty twice in the past 5 years. I tried to get out of it both times, but they didn’t let me go. I was called to duty a second time because the first trial I was involved with was mistrial about half way through. They let us go, so I guess they didn’t count.
I found both trials were interesting. The whole process is a good experience for a writer.
The second trial we finished, and were in deliberations for about 4 hours. We found the defendant not guilty on two counts, and guilty on one. He probably spent 30 days in jail. The judge came in after and thought our decision was the right one.
That sounds really interesting. How many days was the trial?
I have never been called to jury duty and I’m not sure I’d want to or not? I suppose until that day comes I’ll never know. Hope your jury duty time goes well.
Thanks Jennifer. 🙂
I’d love to serve on a jury–just think about what we could learn as writers! I was put on a list once, but wasn’t called in. 🙁
That’s what I’m thinking…although I wouldn’t want to have to hear or see graphic evidence for a brutal crime
I’ve been called twice in Circuit Court and once in Federal. I was not chosen to serve on the Federal trial and one of the Circuit trials I got excused for since I had a newborn at home. The other time I was called I served on two trials. The first was fairly uneventful…the judge did have to dismiss a couple of jurors and use the alternates, but after the second one the family of the person we convicted was harassing a few of the jurors in the hall (myself included), so the judge escorted us out the back way and drove us to our cars in the parking lot.
I enjoy being called because it’s interesting to learn about our judicial system. It definitely opens your eyes about the motivation behind some of the crazy things people do to get in trouble with the law.
Hope your service stirs up plenty of good ideas for use in future books, Sandra. =)
Oh, wow, Jenny, I thought once you’d done your duty once, you’d be off the hook for a long, long time. Being harassed by the convict wasn’t something I’d thought about. Thanks. 🙁
Then again…that would make a great story angle!
Um…nope not me. No interest whatsoever. Hope you haven’t jinxed me with this post! LOL
Yup, that’s what I said when my hubby got summoned last year. He didn’t end up getting picked. He said one of the people on trial looked like he might have been in the mafia, and when an elderly Italian woman was called up to look at him and say whether he knew him before the lawyers decided whether to pick her, she gave the defendant such a nasty scowl that both lawyers immediately rejected her. LOL
My neighbor says that if you don’t want to be picked, dress to the nines, because they want a jury of peers. Unless of course, it’s a white collar crime!
In answer to your questions why above, the trial was 3 days.
That would be “way” above…lol!
I have never been summoned. Might be good for creativity reasons but for some reason I don’t think I’ll be excited when the time comes. Good luck!
Thanks, Amy 🙂
For some reason I’m not able to reply under my thread above. The first time I was called to jury duty was Dec 1994/Jan 1995 and the second was in Nov 2006…so they were quite a bit apart.
It’s also amazing who you may see at a trial…my husband served several years ago on a Federal trial involving country singer Mel Tillis. Mel signed the paper my husband had to turn into his employer. (Hubby still has the copy.)
Oh that’s funny. Maybe I should take a poll on the most unusual way you’ve gotten an autograph 🙂
I have been called several times and usually get dismissed because I worked for the Probation Department for 2 years and they know I will probably be biased against the defendent (which is true LOL:) I got called this past year and actually served on a one day drunk driving/reckless driving case. I actually found it very interesting and the judge came in afterwards and let us ask questions. Learned a lot about the legal/jury system and it wasn’t too painful an experience. I honestly don’t know though if I would want to serve on a complicated, lengthy trial.
That does sound like it would be very educational, and…nice that I only lasted a day. I could handle that 🙂