Jury Deliberations for the Aggravated DUI Case:
We had all been in the jury room SEVERAL times prior to the deliberation, but barely spoke, with the exception of weather & pet small talk nonsense. Most people seemed quite content with just sitting around in our little room & staring at the table. Creepy. Being the productive person that I am, I worked on my Angry Bird skills fir 3 days.
I kept telling myself over & over & over: Remember what you always tell your kids “The loudest one in the room is the weakest one in the room.” Remain quiet. Get a feel for this shit.
We all sit down.
Bailiff John Tucker tells us a few things about how the day is almost over & he will be back in an hour, hands us the forms, tells us to choose a foreperson blah blah blah. See ya, bye bye.
Being the weakest one in the room, I cracked & spoke. “Ok, maybe we should choose a Foreman, I mean foreperson. I have a suggestion. I think THAT lady would be great." (point to a masculine lady who had told me she had been on 3 juries before) & was reading a Stephen King book- I mean really, nuff said right?
Masculine Lady: UH, NO WAY!
BUT, one lady (the shy quiet cutesy lady who answered the Hobbies question during the jury selection with “SHOPPING”) looked me dead in the eyes like I just told her 4’ 9”, mid forties ass that she was fat & ugly. Awwww, I see now you sneaky little cuckoo doodle. You’re a sleeper aren’t cha? You totally want the gig huh? Again, I should SO be a jury consultant.
So being the weakling I said, “Oh ok, how about you.” & pointed to Shrimpy Sneaky Sleeper girl. She was all “Well I did work for several lawyers a few years ago & my husband & I do own our own business, if you guys really want me to do it, I guess I will.” Hehehehehe. I LOVE those sneaky sleeper girls! Almost operatically the room said ♫ “YES!” ♫ .Whoo Hoo! Yay for those sneakies that were obviously 1st runner up at Home Coming.
Weakling: Well, maybe we should talk about the case. Isn’t that what we are supposed to be doing? Everyone nods in agreement except, yep, you guessed it, Sneaky Shrimp. Oopsie, did I step on your toesies?
Random: If you care about stats, the jury was made of 6 white women ranging in age from 30-70 and 2 Hispanic men ranging in age from 35 -65.
Sneaky Shrimp: Well, I think we should wait until we get the final form we sign from the judge regarding the charges before we talk about it. But John Tucker said we are supposed to start deliberating.
Cover mouth to keep from busting into the Kill Bill Whistle Song that has been swirling in my head for 3 days.
Second Sleeper Girl (but who was SUPER cool): Well, I think it’s ok to talk about it. No shit.
Masculine Lady: Yeah, What do you guys think?
Old Lady with birds: Yeah, I just don’t believe that guy’s story.
Weakling: Hehehehehee-take THAT Sneaky Shrimp forelady! HA! “Well, does anyone question the blood alcohol lab work that the defense claims was contaminated?” That part seemed like a simple yes or no dealie.
GROUP: NO not at all. Ok, we just got half way through this bullshit guys! The dude was 3 times over the legal limit, no arguments.
Sleeper Shrimp Foreperson: Well I still think we should wait for the paper work showing ALL the counts. Mmmmkay. She turns head & points to sweet sleeper & mentions her Purell hand sanitizer dangling from her purse & how she her self has all her employees keep Purell on their desks in a special mini Purell person made from wood. Dear Heavenly Father, I know I am actually dead in my bed from a heart attack or brain aneurysm right now, but I beg you please to deliver me from this pit. I want to go to the light. Please. Amen. Oh, and I don’t do potluck either, it’s just icky to me. Ok, I sort of get that, but you’re still a cuckoo.
65 year old dude: Well, I think that guy is guilty. Wow! You spoke!
35 year old dude: Yeah I think that guy is guilty too.
Go away Kill Bill Whistle song!
Weakling: Well, I know we are on break again, but I am not going the restroom this time. I don’t know about you guys, but I keep running into the defendant & his family in the halls and elevators.
Heavens Open, room explodes with conversation! AAAAAHHHH ♪
Sweet Sleeper: Oh I KNOW. I see them EVERYWHERE!
Bird Lady: Oh it’s uncomfortable isn’t it? Uncomfortable? More like torture.
Weakling: I keep running into them in the restrooms & hallways. I actually rode the elevator with 4 of them yesterday.
65 year old guy: I keep looking at them to make sure I don’t work with one of them. You know how us Mexicans all look alike. Holy Shit! You are wickedly FUNNY! You’re my favorite!
Sweet Sleeper: I KNOW. I was pulling out of the parking garage last night & they pulled up next to me at the stop light, I freaked out & ducked my head!
65 year old dude: Was the defendant driving? Hahahahaha! Shit dude! I knew you looked familiar. Is your last name Lopez? (Truly, this guy was SO funny after he started talking). I still love him!
*Room Laughter* Finally!
Haggard Hippie Lady: Well I have to be honest; I’m just not convinced that the defendant was driving the car that night. Maybe he DID switch seats with that passenger who had warrants out like the defense attorney Alan Shore said. WHOA there Janis Joplin! Talk about a curve ball! Weren’t you the one ranting & raving on our 1ST jury break about how shocked you were that Casey Anthony was found innocent?
Sleeper Shrimp: Well, let’s wait til we get that paper work. I’m sure it will be here any minute. Yeah let’s JUST. This 10 page notebook, indictment & 4 pages of jury instructions aren’t quite enough for us dumb asses. I had to do some rescheduling on my trip to the All Star game in Phoenix tomorrow. I’m supposed to meet friends there tomorrow at 1:00. Wow! Good for YOU almost Home Coming Queen! Damn you Kill Bill Whistle Song.
Bailiff John Tucker finally shows up with the paper work that the Sleeper Shrimp foreperson has to sign. Sleeper Shrimp did bring up a valid point regarding some wording that would totally change Janis Joplin’s mind (our only hold out). We sent the judge a question (in writing). The day was over, so we had to come back the next day. DAMNIT! We were SO close! Now we all have to come back tomorrow! No worries, it’s only a 60 mile round trip in rush hour for me. Just whistle Tam.
Next Day: John Tucker brings our answer in writing from the judge and says “This question took a LOT of research from the judge and both attorneys.” No shit? It was asking for a simple definition. He hands it to Sleeper Shrimp forelady I mean person. She holds it, reads it, ponders it, and raises her eyebrows. *Tick tick tick* The shit power does to some people...
Weakling cracks again: Read it MAMA! I am SO done!
Sweet Sleeper: Yeah, READ IT! Hahaha, you’re cool!
Sleeper Shrimp: Oh, it reads: “This part of the statute does not apply to this case.” WTF?
Sweet Sleeper: But those words are ON the indictment & page 8 of our instructions.
Weakling: Ok, maybe we should pull those pages out, underline that wording & ask the judge straight up if we are supposed to completely disregard THOSE words. This seems like a deal breaker here for Janis Joplin. Here, you can have MY notebook. In fact I think I might have a pink highlighter in my purse.
Sweet Sleeper: Hehehe, Why do you have a pink highlighter in your purse? Huh? Who gives a shit! Um to tag the court house walls? I donno, stay focused sweet sleeper!
Weakling: I’m not sure. It probably has something to do with my daughter.
Janis: Well how old is your daughter? A little younger than Uma Thurman! Stay Focused, Christ!
Weakling: 12! with a Hattori Hanzo under her bed. Get off the fence Janis!
In summary: We didn't hold anything against Janis. In fact I respected her for questioning some of the testimony. We eventually found the guy guilty on all counts. There is nothing fun or cool about rendering a guilty verdict.
Did I learn anything from my experience? YEP! TONS!
Would I do it again? HELL NO! Not for a million. It sucked on every possible level.
Epilogue: An honorable mention in my story was an ancient woman who cracked me up during the initial jury question part. When the defense attorney asked if any of us thought the DUI laws in Tucson were too strict. She answered with “Well, I just think the police make too big a deal about this DUI thing. It just cost us tax payers so much money to get everyone involved. And I really don't like those ticket cameras, I think they are just wrong.” I never saw her after the break. I still can’t decide if she was suffering from dementia or was just a crafty ole’ shuffler who got out of jury duty.