Saturday, June 30, 2012

Sex, money, juries, and administrative bodies

I don’t mind when a juror is deadpan or stone-faced.  What does bother me, however, is when I see jurors sighing, eye-rolling, sleeping (literally), and complaining in the courthouse hallways about how they don’t want to be there.  (Is watching a jury trial and protecting a fellow citizen from a wrongful conviction really that much worse than their regular jobs?)  Some jurors just don’t seem to realize that it could easily be them sitting at the defense table, instead of in the jury box.  If they understood this, they would instantly appreciate the importance of having an alert (or at least conscious) jury.

But despite my own feelings on the subject, one recent criminal defendant must have been furious with his jury.  The evidence showed that he had taken a passing interest in a woman who—oops!—was an undercover cop.  He was then criminally charged with propositioning her for sexual intercourse, which required the state to prove that, roughly speaking, he (1) requested sexual intercourse (2) in exchange for money.