Monday, July 25, 2011

Jury Duty: Comments

I am answering the very welcome comment by Mr. Ex-Enchilada here rather than in the comments section, because some people never read the comments:

I did listen to the judge's instructions. He defined each word of each charge according to the law as he gives it, (what is Attempted, what is Assault, etc) but some of the definitions were in cumbersome legal language, and I can see how confusing it can be for jurors. It was attempted assault in the first degree, not murder, by the way.
We were told to consider the case only taking into account the facts of the case as they are presented in the courtroom (holes everywhere). We were told to consider the quality of the evidence vs. the quantity of the evidence. But we were also asked to use our common sense. Well, common sense tells me that even though the phone calls do not prove that he was shooting that gun on that night, he was concealing a gun in his house and took pains to remove it before the police could get it. It's possible that is the gun he carried in the melee, if he indeed was packing heat.
This guy was hiding drugs inside THE HOLLOW of his bathroom door and despite the fact that they ransacked his place, they couldn't find the piece that his buddy retrieved without a problem. No wonder they couldn't get him on drug charges.
So yes, as an obedient juror I would probably have argued that the evidence was not sufficiently clear that he was shooting from a gun that night. A fellow alternate juror with whom I chatted after dismissal felt the same way. Circuitous evidence sloppily presented probably means, if the jurors follow the letter of the law and not their common sense, that this creep will walk. Maybe the cops can nail him next time.
The waste of resources, as you point out, is appalling. Perhaps that's what prevents the city from having more modern facilities. The Criminal Courts Building is almost in a state of disrepair.
I agree that in the Casey Anthony case the wrong charges were brought. In this case,  I wonder why they didn't just go for the counts of criminal possession of a weapon and reckless endangerment. Too little jail time? Meanwhile, this happened in 2009. Has he been in Rikers for two years? I doubt that he's been out on bail. We weren't told.
My point is that justice is muddled, elusive, and very complicated.
I'm dying to find out the verdict.

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