Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Jury Duty - Day 3 - AM

Both attorneys presented their closing arguments as soon as court reconvened this morning. They were complete by 10:00 AM. The judge instructed the jury as to how to proceed in the jury room, and we were dismissed to begin deliberating.

We selected a foreperson (our late-comer, who practically campaigned for it), and after about an hour or so, we took a tentative vote on each of the 6 counts (one count of terroristic threats had been removed from consideration.) We were divided on almost every count. The count of aggravated assault was the most serious charge and the one we were most divided on, so we requested another hearing of the 911 tape and another viewing of the police video. We wanted to hear again what the victim said at the time of the incident.

We had to go back into the courtroom to view the video and listen to the audio CD. During the 911 call, we could hear the victim screaming in the background. The caller, Mrs. R., told the 911 operator that her "daughter's" boyfriend was after her with a knife. She said that the defendent just hit the victim with a shovel and asked for police and an ambulance. In the police video (remember it was very hard to hear with interference from both the police radio and the commercial radio often obscuring the comments by the participants. We were able to hear more this time as we concentrated harder.

When the police first found the defendent, they seemed most interested in the damage to the car. We heard the victim say that she "lived" at the residence and that the defendent picked up the shovel. She also said that she saw the knife on the ground. Mrs. R said that the defendent threatened to kill her.

The audio and video took almost an hour and finished at 12:00 Noon. We were dismissed for lunch with instructions not to talk about the case and to return to the jury room at 1:30. I visited the bathroom before I left the courthouse, so I was late and the lone juror walking out at that time. A few yards in front of me, the defendent and the victim walked hand-in-hand to their car in the same parking garage to go to lunch!

Jim picked me up in front of the courthouse (only a couple of blocks from his office,) and we went to Duffy's Deli and had great chicken salad sanwiches for lunch.

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