Friday, January 16, 2015

Civic Duty

For the 1st time in my life I had to go to courthouse for a jury duty summons.

During jury selection process I was alternate for ~24 hours.

I was on the jury for ~2 minutes

After listening to the  reading of charges (1 charge of rape and 14 charges of child molestation) I was thinking I don't even watch Law & Order:SVU which I know is fiction, Do I want to have to have to pay attention to testimony to determine it is fiction?

I got to listen to jurors drawn before me answer judge's questions about friends and family exposure to child molestation and hypothetical situations involved I did gain a respect for judge and lawyers having to deal with this dark side of humanity balanced while making sure defendants are treated fairly.

For one sleepless night I got to think about what does reasonable doubt mean?  I was willing to commit amounts of money during PLO hand on level of certainty below reasonable doubt, would I be able to stay rational after listening to testimony?  The whole presumption of innocence runs counter to other mindset that it would take a different level of disturbed/delusion to lie about being a victim.

Thankfully after the judge and lawyers agreed that a fair panel had been selected, the defense attorney issued a perfunctory challenge to promote me onto challenge and her next challenge gave me boot.