8:28 am - Tues 1.04.2011
Went in yesterday morning for jury duty.
Spent the morning in the juror holding pen, reading magazines (Tried to get online at one point - they have a bank of computers in the room for that purpose - but it wasn't happening).
When we got our talking-to, about how to fill out our forms and such, I was encouraged when told there was only one new case that day (And an ongoing one which, for some reason, might need more jurors).
(Typically, there are at least 20 cases on the docket, and if you get called to be a juror on one and aren't picked, you go back into the "jury pool" till the next case comes up. So if there's just one case, and you don't get called for it, or don' t get picked if you are called...? Well, like I said, I was encouraged)
Lunch was from noon to 1:30; I went to McDonald's, then for a brief walk around the neighborhood, before heading back to the courthouse.
Shortly before 2:00, my name was called as one of 35 potential jurors for that one new case on the docket.
(I'm not sure how many people were in the holding pen, but I'd guess the 35 of us comprised approximately half the assemblage.)
We were instructed to head to the court, one floor down, issued numbers, then ushered in front of the judge (Who, earlier, had talked to the whole group briefly in the holding pen).
The 35 of us were sworn in, the judge introduced the bailiff and the court reporter and such, gave us some basic instructions (Which mostly amounted to "don't talk to anyone about the case"), then told us jury selection would start tomorrow, ordering us back in at 10:30 am.
We weren't told about the case, and as I just said, I'm not supposed to talk about it anyway, but this particular court deals in misdemeanors crimes.
The good news there is that misdemeanor trials are, in general, relatively brief - If I'm picked for this jury (And I'm assuming I will be - I mean, why wouldn't I?), the judge said the trial will probably be no longer than a week.
So Jim goes to court.
It kind of sucks.
But could be worse.
At least I'm not a defendant.
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