Re: [humanism-174] My day in Jury Duty - from Sheri

From: sheri p.
Sent on: Tuesday, February 25, 2014 8:43 PM
Chris:

Yeah, it is amazing what "seals the deal" in these cases.  I realized (as I was on the rapid) that my first case (six years ago) went to trial because the defendant was already in prison for another robbery (we didn't know that as jurors since he didn't take the stand) and he had a public defender so he said "eff it; I will go to trial to get out of prison for a while".  

This time, the defendant KNEW there was too much evidence against him and he took the plea deal.  So, we (the jurors) figured he had to pay for his lawyer and his family (who probably paid for this lawyer) was in attendance. 

I think they said that it was a high percentage (something like 80%) of these criminal cases do NOT make it to trial because the defendant knows he/she is guilty and the evidence against him or her is too strong.

Still, there are innocent people who go to trial and are convicted.  That is what is sad.  Looking at any high-profile case, you can tell who has the money to get the off with great witnesses.




On Tue, Feb 25, 2014 at 8:06 PM, Chris K <[address removed]> wrote:
Sheri-

The photographs were quite gruesome. The testimony was amazing. 

At the time I didn't have TV and hadn't had it in a couple years so I had no knowledge of the case. The lawyers seemed to be incredulous when I told them this. 

The only questions they asked me were if I would have a problem sentencing a 17 year old as an adult and whether I could approach the case with an unbiased mind. 

They dismissed several people from the pool who seemed to be extremists from a number of viewpoints. 

I found Brogan's testimony disingenuous, conflicting, and insincere. The clincher was the guy they tried to kill.  His testimony sealed it for me. 

Chris




Sent from my aaaarrrrrphone

On Feb 25, 2014, at 7:29 PM, sheri presloid <[address removed]> wrote:

Chris, I am curious how you handled that.  That had to be difficult to view pics, here testimony, etc.  I had a robbery case and that was simple; no one died.  

This time around would have been rough to hear, but I know that the victim didn't die either and I would be able to come to a decision based on the evidence.


On Tue, Feb 25, 2014 at 10:23 AM, Chris K <[address removed]> wrote:
Good luck!  

I was an alternate on the Craigslist murder trial of Brogan Rafferty. I sat through the entire trial but was dismissed at deliberation. 

Chris


Sent from my aaaarrrrrphone

On Feb 25, 2014, at 6:46 AM, sheri presloid <[address removed]> wrote:

Good morning, everyone!

Well, I am getting ready to head downtown for day two.  Today, the prosecutors and defense attorney will be "vetting" us.  I will let you know the outcome when I get home.  Before I had to mention anything yesterday, everyone was very friendly and talkative.  It ought to be interesting to see if I am a virus or a curiosity to people. 

Either way, I am content with who I am! :)

Thank you so much for the kind words!  It is such a wonderful feeling to know there are people to talk to about these experiences.

Until later.....
:)



On Tue, Feb 25, 2014 at 6:37 AM, Sam Salerno <[address removed]> wrote:
Wow Sheri, that is an awesome story. I can't wait to hear what comes next. 

Sam

Sent from my iPad

On Feb 24, 2014, at 8:34 PM, sheri presloid <[address removed]> wrote:

Ohhhh..I don't even know how to begin.  I wish I could have written this as it happened, no...I wish I could have a video recording of what happened today.  I am going to try and make it short and sweet.

There were 12 people in the jury seats.  Me and 21 others as perspective jurors in the overflow.  The third juror was a "brother".  Didn't know what that meant.  He looked like a priest, but I guess he is Jesuit and that makes him a brother in the rankings.

The 12th juror was this 39 year old man with five kids ranging in age from 6 - 4 - 3 - 2 and 1.  Super religious and the family goes three times a week to church.

I am the 13th person (first in the overflow).  Judge Strickland Stafford (I think I got that right) asked questions from every one of us.  One of them was if we belong to any organizations or groups.  I mentioned CFT.  I had to repeat it three times to her even though I said it slowly.  She never heard of it.  She asked me what Cleveland Free-Thinkers were.  I started lightly.  I said it was a secular/humanist group.  She proceeded to ask me what that meant.  So, I gave in and mentioned it involves atheists and other like minded people who pay attention to keeping state and religion separate and that it goes beyond atheism and it delves into all that is "free thinking" including evolution, science, universe, etc.  Again; keeping it short and sweet. I did mention we help with charity stuff too but not affiliated with churches, etc...

She asked me if we dealt with judicial stuff.  I said we are not an organization like FFRF.  I had to explain that.  I mentioned Sharia Law and the stoning of women and I mentioned how that couple last week FINALLY got prison time for killing BOTH of their children because they decided to pray instead of getting medical intervention.  So, it was basically just that...

Well, me, being the 13th, there were 21 more people to interview.  The lady next to me mentioned her church and bible classes.  Everyone except two people talked about their "organization" affiliation and they mentioned church!  You would think I brought HELL into this courtroom!  No shit, I could not make up this story if I tried.  This woman (three jurors down from me) said she used to be an atheist but she went to GOD to get a husband.  I am not kidding you.  This is the best part:  Judge Stafford asked if god gave her a husband.  She said, "Yes, your honor, he did, but he was not the right one."  The judge said, "Did you send him back?"  The courtroom busted out laughing.  The juror said, "No.  We are separated, but that was god's will and he will guide me to the correct husband".

This is not a "story".  This happened today.  I have jury duty all week.  I don't think I will get on this case, but if I do I will let you know what happens.

So, this freaky juror (same one who god sent the wrong hubby to her) says she is part of IDMR: http://www.idmr.net/history.htm.  It is a metaphysical bullshit stuff.  She said the founder "rid himself of his flesh" in the 70's.  The judge asked, "What happened to the rest of him!?!?!  What does that mean?!?!??!?!"  She replied, "He died".  The judge asked if this religion was a form of Christianity.  The juror said that they were "sons".  The judge asked if it was S-U-N or S-O-N.  The juror replied "SON", but they were sons of the Sun.  

I swear; there are fucked up people in this world.  Oh, and they live in Cleveland.

We finally get done and this woman, Cheryl (she goes by my name; sheri - not written the same) and we are by the elevators.  She comes up to me and says, "I just want to tell you that I think you are so brave to say you are an Atheist".  She continues to say that she thinks she is one too.  We both rode the Red Line in from the rapid and we talked all the way to her stop.  She and I really clicked.

She is really nice.  Oh, FYI - I mentioned that CFT has a website and FB page in the courtroom.  The judge, prosecutors and defense attorney were scribbling away.

Mark - I don't know if you can see traffic, but let me know if you see anything! ha

So, that was my first day in jury duty!  Yay me!  I am going to bet I won't get on the case.  The people looked at me like I was nuts, but not as nutty as the meta chick.

Sheri




--
Please Note: If you hit "REPLY", your message will be sent to everyone on this mailing list ([address removed])
This message was sent by sheri presloid ([address removed]) from The Cleveland Freethinkers.
To learn more about sheri presloid, visit his/her member profile

To report this message or block the sender, please click here
Set my mailing list to email me As they are sent | In one daily email | Don't send me mailing list messages

Meetup, POB 4668 #37895 NY NY USA 10163 | [address removed]




--
Please Note: If you hit "REPLY", your message will be sent to everyone on this mailing list ([address removed])
This message was sent by Sam Salerno ([address removed]) from The Cleveland Freethinkers.
To learn more about Sam Salerno, visit his/her member profile

To report this message or block the sender, please click here
Set my mailing list to email me As they are sent | In one daily email | Don't send me mailing list messages

Meetup, POB 4668 #37895 NY NY USA 10163 | [address removed]





--
Please Note: If you hit "REPLY", your message will be sent to everyone on this mailing list ([address removed])
This message was sent by sheri presloid ([address removed]) from The Cleveland Freethinkers.
To learn more about sheri presloid, visit his/her member profile
To report this message or block the sender, please click here
Set my mailing list to email me As they are sent | In one daily email | Don't send me mailing list messages

Meetup, POB 4668 #37895 NY NY USA 10163 | [address removed]




--
Please Note: If you hit "REPLY", your message will be sent to everyone on this mailing list ([address removed])
This message was sent by Chris K ([address removed]) from The Cleveland Freethinkers.
To learn more about Chris K, visit his/her member profile

To report this message or block the sender, please click here
Set my mailing list to email me As they are sent | In one daily email | Don't send me mailing list messages

Meetup, POB 4668 #37895 NY NY USA 10163 | [address removed]





--
Please Note: If you hit "REPLY", your message will be sent to everyone on this mailing list ([address removed])
This message was sent by sheri presloid ([address removed]) from The Cleveland Freethinkers.
To learn more about sheri presloid, visit his/her member profile
To report this message or block the sender, please click here
Set my mailing list to email me As they are sent | In one daily email | Don't send me mailing list messages

Meetup, POB 4668 #37895 NY NY USA 10163 | [address removed]




--
Please Note: If you hit "REPLY", your message will be sent to everyone on this mailing list ([address removed])
This message was sent by Chris K ([address removed]) from The Cleveland Freethinkers.
To learn more about Chris K, visit his/her member profile

To report this message or block the sender, please click here
Set my mailing list to email me As they are sent | In one daily email | Don't send me mailing list messages

Meetup, POB 4668 #37895 NY NY USA 10163 | [address removed]

Our Sponsors

People in this
Meetup are also in:

Sign up

Meetup members, Log in

By clicking "Sign up" or "Sign up using Facebook", you confirm that you accept our Terms of Service & Privacy Policy