My Jury Duty Experience!
June 4th, 2014
I got a notice saying I had Jury Duty coming up… I thought when I called the number the day before that they wouldn’t need my number. But in case my mom was available to watch Ryder if I was needed. I called and found out I was needed. I dropped Ryder off at my mom’s house at 7:30 am. I had to be at Jury Duty at 8:15 am. It takes about 20 minutes to get there. BUT you have to get there early if you want any free parking since they don’t have a place for you to park. They have a parking garage but they charge for that. They also have free 2 hour parking but they said they would need us longer than 2 hours, even if we weren’t chosen in the jury selection process, so you couldn’t park there. The Justice Center is in downtown Fort Collins, thus the parking issues. Also, they said that you have to go through security to get to the office and that it could take 15 minutes to go through…so basically get there early! Oh, and if you are late, they will have to call you back another day…
So, I start driving and am making pretty good time. Then I’m getting closer to downtown where the Justice Center is. I am thinking the speed limit is 40 mph since that is what it had been for the past 10 minutes. Then I start seeing some construction signs in the distance so I start slowing down. Then sirens go off… WELP…apparently, the speed limit was 35 mph and I thought it was 40 mph. I was going 46 mph…so I got pulled over! SO annoying. I explain the situation how I was going to Jury Duty and have to be there early. I’ve never gone before so I don’t know where the building is, where parking is, etc. and he is very understandable but still writes me a ticket. He said he would lower my speed so my ticket is only $50 instead of $150 or something. So I’m like thinking ‘Thank goodness’ and then he says there is a fee of $35 so it comes to be $85. HOW LAME IS THAT. ALL really because a citizen in my community committed a horrible crime and I had to be there!!! ;) The motorcyclist cop said he “was required to write me a ticket because so and so says I have to” or something like that which, who knows, maybe they always say that after acting really nice and understanding to you… But he was like, “Jury Duty…what an honor!” So anyways, he asks me when I have to report and I tell him in like 15 minutes and he is like “Ok I’ll hurry” (in writing the ticket.) So yeah, that was a major annoyance. The only times I have gotten a speeding ticket are when I didn’t know the speed limit. No wreckless driving, just a little over… I just don’t go downtown all the time so I don’t know at what specific roads the speed limit lowers or raises, etc. I don’t even know all of the names of the street roads, especially not downtown! I hangout mostly in southern Fort Collins and Loveland. I hadn’t gotten a speeding ticket since I was like 16…and now I’m 26…hope I wait at least another 10 years before getting another!
OH, and I cannot leave this out. There was no place to pull over for a ticket so I had to pull over in the Book Ranch which is basically a sketchy porn shop!!! How embarrassing right?! When I was leaving, I hoped no one thought I was there getting some weird mags or videos…just leaving the cop HAHA. But really, sketchiest place ever. Looks disgusting.
So, I luckily, park quickly in the parking garage as there is no time to look for free parking at this point. I walk in, make a friend actually, with a girl who seems pretty cool ha. We talked about The Office and how Toby was chosen as a Juror for the Scranton Strangler…etc. So, we are waiting in a big room of about 60 people… Some justice people come in and take about 30 people for 1 trial leaving me and everyone else in the room. The girl and I had just exchanged our names and then she was sent off haha. I forgot her name, so, so much for that. But she was cool, lol. Too bad we couldn’t have been Jurors together! So, they called us all back and we entered a court room. Then the Judge asks like a hundred questions seeing if anyone would become ineligible to be a Juror… He explains the very basics of the case. Basically, a girl got a DUI and caused a wreck, or two…and she happened to be a CSU Vet student but actually just graduated so she is now technically a Veterinarian… What’s funny is when I came in, I saw her in the front and she kept looking back at everyone and seemed super nervous. I had no clue who she was but the first thought I had was… “Is she the one being tried? She definitely looks very nervous…guilty?!” Haha. But really, she was totally nervous and everyone could tell. She ended up being the girl who got the DUI. It was a criminal trial so I think the state was charging her. The prosecutor [forgive me if I use the wrong words in here…I forgot ALL about my ‘Business Law’ course at BYU ;)] was the cop who pulled her over. Then they called up about half of the people to sit on the Jury stand to be asked more in depth questions. So there were 30 people in the trial and they called 12 up. They would only keep 6. My name wasn’t called. I was like ‘Bummer!!!’ I think it would be fun to be a Juror. Am I weird for wanting to be one? I don’t think so haha. But most people try to get out of Jury Duty. So then the Judge announces he has worked with a lady on the stand and she has to be dismissed. Then they called my name! I was like, “YES!!!!” I just knew I would be up there. Then they made each person answer like 15 questions out loud to everyone in the room. I was the first person to answer them. I had to tell (yell really) everyone my name, age, single/married, kids, their jobs/ages, parents jobs, how long I’ve lived here, etc. Then the prosecutor’s lawyer asked us all individual questions. They memorized all our names on the spot. I was very impressed. He asked me ‘Ms. Sloan, what are some common signs of drinking?” He also asked me, “Do you think you could determine someone guilty, with evidence, beyond a reasonable doubt?” I said, “Yes, actually I think you probably could.” Then the defendant lawyer came and asked questions too. I think they were trying to make the Vet seem like a tired Vet student doing crazy rotations in the hospital, etc. Then they each chose 3 people to dismiss to make it 6 total Jurors from 12. I was dismissed. I think it had something to do with the fact that I think you could determine someone is guilty without literally being there at the crime scene…beyond a reasonable doubt ;) I was BUMMED!
2 days later…
I had a play date with some friends and met the wife of the cop (the one who pulled over the girl). She said the girl had had a DUI before and also that her cop husband had pulled her over before this time. And she was on a bunch of medicine too… And she was guilty for the case I was almost a Juror at… The Jury wasn’t told that she has had previous run-ins with the cops and also a prior DUI…maybe would have persuaded some people! I sure wouldn’t want her as my Vet for Katinka! Ha! She said the Jury couldn’t come to a decision that day and was there for 11 hours!!! She said that she thinks she will get another trial because they didn’t come to a decision. So random that I met her a couple of days later and she knew ALL about the case. I tried to look online to determine the verdict but can’t seem to find anything. I really want to know what happened!!!
I was SO close to being a Juror! Haha. Next time ;) I think I need to be less opinionated so the defendant and prosecutor won’t worry about me as a threat…next time!!!