January 9, 2020 | Citizen Juries
Outrage over South Florida juror who was jailed for oversleeping sparks legislation
Outrage over a 10-day jail sentence given to a Palm Beach County college student who overslept and missed jury duty last year has sparked legislation to put restrictions on judges.
State Sen. Bobby Powell and state Rep. Al Jacquet, both Palm Beach County Democrats, filed bills (SB 1590/ HB 1125) this week that would bar judges from sentencing people to jail for missing jury duty...
December 28, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Erie judge reaffirms decision in non-citizen juror case
A local drug case is still set to be retried after an Erie County judge once again ruled that a woman who is not a U.S. citizen shouldn’t have served on a jury at the original trial in August.
In an opinion filed Monday, Senior Judge William R. Cunningham affirmed his original decision to grant a new trial and offered a more detailed explanation for the ruling, which he first issued in November...
November 30, 2019 | Citizen Juries
A non-citizen served on an Erie County jury. Now what?
In September, a letter arrived at the Erie County Courthouse that upended the verdict in a drug case and spurred still-unsettled questions about who can qualify for jury duty.
Its author was a woman who served as a juror in the case. She is not an American citizen, and wrote in her letter that she said so several times before ultimately being picked for the panel during the August trial term.
“I am certain I stated I am not a citizen,” the woman wrote in her letter, which is included in court records. “However, I was put all the way through and eventually selected. I must admit it was a shocker to me and quite exciting to even think I could be picked.”
November 13, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Colorado Springs police officers justified in shooting of De’Von Bailey, grand jury determines
A grand jury unanimously determined Colorado Springs police officers were justified when they shot and killed 19-year-old De’Von Bailey in August, Fourth Judicial District Attorney Dan May announced Wednesday.
“These are not easy decisions,” May told reporters during an impromptu news conference near the Teller County Courthouse in Cripple Creek. “I think there was a totally independent investigation and a totally independent decision in this case.”...
October 14, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Attorney defends judge who jailed juror over failure to show for trial
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (CBS12) — Some in the local legal community are coming to the defense of a judge in Palm Beach County, who recently sentenced a young man to 10 days in jail for failing to fulfill his jury obligation.
Judge John Kastrenakes, of the 15th Judicial Circuit, is weathering strong criticism and facing calls for his discipline or removal...
October 7, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Supreme Court Weighs Ending Non-Unanimous Jury Verdicts in Criminal Cases
WASHINGTON — Almost every part of the Bill of Rights applies to both the federal government and to the states, but the Supreme Court on Monday wrestled with whether to tolerate a rare exception for non-unanimous jury verdicts in criminal cases. Such verdicts are forbidden in federal trials under the Sixth Amendment but permitted in ones held in state court.
There seemed little doubt that the justices would have found the question fairly easy absent a confusing 1972 decision that said the Constitution required federal juries to render unanimous verdicts but allowed divided state juries. The vote was 4 to 1 to 4, and only Justice Lewis F. Powell Jr., who cast the controlling vote, said federal and state cases could be treated differently...
October 2, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Jury Awards $27 Million To Massachusetts Man Wrongfully Convicted Of Murder
A man who served nearly three decades for a murder he didn't commit was awarded $27 million — $1 million for each year he was in prison — by a federal jury last month.
When the jury foreman read out the award, "everybody started crying and stuff like that," said Mark Schand.
Schand was convicted in 1987 of a nightclub shooting in Springfield, Mass., that killed a female bystander. In 2013, a judge considered new evidence — uncovered by the innocence organization Centurion Ministries — and let him go...
September 25, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Columbia family accused of jury tampering, stalking juror in major SC drug trial
Four people at a recent major Columbia federal drug trafficking trial allegedly stalked a juror as he was driving home and offered him money to sabotage any jury verdict, court records show.
But the juror promptly reported the jury tampering attempt to court officials, according to court records...
September 4, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Jury instruction error could result in less prison time for Akron man convicted of murder
An error in the instructions given to a Summit County jury could result in less prison time for an Akron man convicted of murder.
The instructions didn’t make it clear that jurors — in order to find Kennae Baker guilty of aggravated murder in the shooting death of another man — had to find that he did so while committing another crime. In this case, the crime was aggravated burglary...
August 26, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Why Pennsylvania jury duty pays $9 per day
For two years in a row, Melissa Correll has been called for jury duty in Philadelphia. The librarian at Arcadia University wound up not being picked for a trial either time. But the Germantown resident was compensated for waiting around for the better part of two days...
August 21, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Meet the woman in charge of giving you jury duty
TWIN FALLS — It might be one of the most dreaded envelopes to receive in the mail.
“Dear Citizen,” it begins. “Welcome to jury service.”
While taking time off work or interrupting other daily activities to sit in a courtroom for jury selection and, possibly, a multi-day trial, is inconvenient, Twin Falls County jury commissioner Jerry Woolley pointed out how, next to military service, jury duty is key to the American way of life...
August 7, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Louisiana attorney asks for jurors who wouldn’t judge client’s face tattoos
An attorney representing a Louisiana man charged with murder asked for jurors who will overlook his client's face tattoos — which include skull horns and a set of teeth.
William Bottoms Jr., 29, faces two counts of second-degree murder stemming from the deaths of two men in June 2017. They were found shot in the head, in the back seat of a bar, covered with a sheet...
August 1, 2019 | Citizen Juries
The Latest: Jury tells Katy Perry, others to pay $2.78M
A jury has found that Katy Perry, her collaborators and her record label must pay $2.78 million because the pop star’s 2013 hit “Dark Horse” copied a Christian rap song...
July 19, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Michigan Supreme Court orders new trial for man convicted by ‘coerced’ jury
A Michigan man who was sent to prison for 14 years after being convicted on gun charges, will get a new trial after the state Supreme Court ruled that the original trial jury was coerced into their verdict by the trial judge.
July 10, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Missouri law excuses people age 75 and older from jury duty
Older Missouri residents soon will be able to get out of jury duty, if they so choose.Legislation signed Tuesday by Gov. Mike Parson will allow anyone age 75 or older to ask a court to be excused from jury duty. The judge will have to grant the request...
July 2, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Federal civil jury finds two San Jose cops liable for excessive force in fatal 2016 police shooting
SAN JOSE — A federal jury has found that two San Jose police officers used excessive force when they fatally shot Anthony Nunez as he experienced a suicidal breakdown in front of his East San Jose home three years ago.The verdict announced Tuesday by a six-member jury panel also recommended a $2.6 million award to Nunez’s estate, represented by Sandy Sanchez, the aunt who raised Nunez from childhood to when he died at age 18 on July 4, 2016...
June 21, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Supreme Court Reaffirms Rule Against Racial Bias in Jury Selection
WASHINGTON—The Supreme Court on Friday reaffirmed its strict prohibition against racial bias in jury selection, voting to overturn a black defendant’s murder conviction in Mississippi after a white prosecutor dismissed 41 of 42 African Americans possible jurors over the course of six trials for the same crimes...
June 20, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Finders keepers or thieves? Jury gets $3.5M secret gold certificate case
FREEHOLD - The verdict in a criminal case surrounding 13 rare gold certificates worth more than $3.5 million might boil down to a childhood saying: Finders keepers.Or at least that's what the defense attorneys want the jury to decide as they started deliberating Thursday the case of two men accused of stealing and selling the antique money found six years ago in an Asbury Park home...
June 11, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Jury can’t decide on charges against Arizona border activist
TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — A U.S. jury could not reach a verdict Tuesday against a border activist charged with conspiracy to transport and harbor migrants in a trial that humanitarian aid groups said would have wide implications on their work.Defense attorneys argued that Scott Daniel Warren, a 36-year-old college geography instructor, was simply being kind by providing two migrants with water, food and lodging when he was arrested in early 2018. He faced up to 20 years in prison...
June 4, 2019 | Citizen Juries
District Attorney warns of Berks jury duty scam
The Berks County District Attorney’s Office has received several complaints of what is being identified as a “Jury Duty” Scam. According to the District Attorney's Office, victims will receive a call from unknown person/s claiming to be with the Sheriff’s Office. Victims are being told they failed to appear for Jury Duty and must now report to the courthouse...
May 27, 2019 | Citizen Juries
EBR jury trials set to resume after glitch raises constitutionality concerns
BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Jury trials in East Baton Rouge Parish resume Tuesday, May 28, after the Louisiana Supreme Court suspended them in April of 2019.Attorneys defending accused cop-killer Grover Cannon pointed out Louisianians born after June 2, 1993 were excluded from jury selection. The 19th Judicial District Court admitted a computer glitch that has been going on since 2011 was the cause. That admission raised flags in Louisiana’s High Court...
May 13, 2019 | Citizen Juries
California Jury Awards $2 Billion To Couple In Roundup Weed Killer Cancer Trial
A California jury has awarded a couple more than $2 billion in a verdict against Monsanto, a subsidiary of Bayer. This is the third recent court decision involving claims that the company's Roundup weed killer caused cancer.The jury in Alameda County, just east of San Francisco, ruled that the couple, Alva and Alberta Pilliod of Livermore, Calif., contracted non-Hodgkin's lymphoma because of their use of the glyphosate-based herbicide. They were each awarded $1 billion in punitive damages and an additional $55 million in collective compensatory damages...
May 7, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Jury to hear case against couple who say they’re aren’t subject to state’s laws
SUNBURY — Two “sovereign citizens” who have been sitting in the Northumberland County Prison for seven months, refusing to be fingerprinted or sign paperwork, are headed to trial.Despite their claims that they’re not subject to any laws, A jury was selected Monday for the trial that’s slated to begin Wednesday in county court...
April 25, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Jury in Armstrong trial asks judge about breaking deadlocks
HOUSTON - The jury which will decide the fate of a teen accused of killing his parents nearly three years ago seemed to be having trouble reaching a verdict when they resumed their deliberations Thursday.A.J. Armstrong, 19, is accused of killing his parents in July 2016...
April 10, 2019 | Citizen Juries
A ‘Glitch’ Left Young People Off the Jury Rolls. Does That Violate the Constitution?
BATON ROUGE, La. — The Louisianans who were summoned to decide whether Grover Cannon killed a police officer were Asian, black, Hispanic and white. They were caregivers and engineers, state workers and self-employed.But Adrienne Harreveld, a law student working for the defense team in Mr. Cannon’s death penalty trial, noticed something else: In a city with one of the South’s largest public universities, not one member of last month’s jury pool in East Baton Rouge Parish seemed all that young...
April 9, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Jury recommends death penalty for Michael Bargo
A jury on Tuesday unanimously recommended Michael Shane Bargo be put to death for the murder of Seath Jackson.At 5:05 p.m., nearly five hours after they began their deliberation, the seven women and five men let bailiffs know they had reached a decision.After instructing those inside the courtroom — family members of both Bargo and Seath — to be respectful of the jury’s decision, Circuit Judge Anthony Tatti called for the jurors at 5:15 p.m. Three minutes later, the recommendation was read aloud. Bargo’s head was bowed...
April 1, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Lawsuit claims Mercedes-Benz dealership in The Woodlands fired man over jury duty
HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A 19-year-old juror has filed a lawsuit against a Mercedes-Benz dealership for firing him in the midst of jury service. Zach White is a 2018 high school graduate and had been working as a valet driver at the Mercedes-Benz of The Woodlands since last fall. "I really enjoyed working there, driving a Mercedes every day, it was cool," said White. White, whose father is a local police detective, says he long had the values of public service instilled upon him. He even plans on joining the military after college. When he was called to jury duty in February, there was never much doubt he would show up...
March 27, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Prosecutor: Grand jury in Russia probe ‘continuing robustly’
WASHINGTON — A grand jury that was involved in special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation is "continuing robustly," a federal prosecutor said Wednesday.The prosecutor, David Goodhand, made the revelation during a hearing over whether court filings in the Mueller probe should be unsealed related to an unidentified foreign corporation that had refused to turn over documents to the special counsel...
March 21, 2019 | Citizen Juries
A Supreme Court case on jury bias prompts a rare question from Thomas
WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court seemed deeply troubled Wednesday about the actions of a Mississippi prosecutor who has tried an African American man six times for a quadruple murder and has blocked the vast majority of black potential jurors.The hour-long argument brought a surprise: a question by Justice Clarence Thomas, and one that went in an opposite direction. He inquired about the race of jurors dismissed by defense lawyers for Curtis Flowers, drawing out the information that they were white...
March 15, 2019 | Citizen Juries
The five jury strikes that could decide Curtis Flowers’ fate
The fate of Curtis Flowers may well hinge on how the U.S. Supreme Court views the removal of a handful of African-Americans from jury selection at his 2010 trial.The key issue is whether the prosecutor in the case, Doug Evans, violated Flowers' rights by dismissing black jurors because of their race, which is unconstitutional...
March 12, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Black woman added to jury over protests by officer’s lawyer
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — A judge in the case of a white western Pennsylvania police officer accused of shooting to death a black teenager last year put a black woman on the jury Tuesday over the defense’s objections but said he will reconsider the decision...
March 5, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Judge rejects Chelsea Manning’s effort to avoid testifying before grand jury investigating WikiLeaks founder
ALEXANDRIA, Va. - Former Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning appeared in Alexandria federal court Tuesday to unsuccessfully fight a subpoena requiring her to testify in front of a grand jury investigating WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
Outside the courthouse after an hour-long closed hearing, Manning said her motion to quash the subpoena was denied but her team believes they "still have grounds to litigate." She would not go into detail because Judge Claude Hilton also blocked her bid to unseal the proceedings. But she said she was "probably going to be" at the courthouse multiple times in coming days...
February 25, 2019 | Citizen Juries
El Chapo Trial: Did the Jury Engage in Misconduct?
In a typical case, after a defendant’s conviction, the criminal process slows down as both sides prepare for sentencing or the defense prepares an appeal. But the prosecution of Joaquín Guzmán Loera, the Mexican drug capo known as El Chapo, has never been a typical case...
February 18, 2019 | Citizen Juries
When Does Kicking Black People Off Juries Cross a Constitutional Line?
WASHINGTON — Doug Evans, a white state prosecutor in Mississippi, has worked hard to keep black people off the juries that have heard his case against Curtis Flowers, who has been tried six times — yes, six times — for the 1996 murders of four people inside a furniture store in Winona, Miss...
February 12, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Notorious drug lord Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman convicted
Mexico's most notorious drug lord, Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, was convicted Tuesday of running an industrial-scale smuggling operation after a three-month trial packed with Hollywood-style tales of grisly killings, political payoffs, cocaine hidden in jalapeno cans, jewel-encrusted guns and a naked escape with his mistress through a tunnel...
February 6, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Here’s why it’s taking so long for El Chapo’s jury to reach a verdict
BROOKLYN, New York — Jurors in the trial of Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán sat through nearly three months of damning testimony and heard just 30 minutes from the only witness called by the defense. But as of Wednesday, after a day and a half of deliberations, they still haven’t made up their minds about whether he ought to be convicted or acquitted...
February 5, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Fate of Mexican drug lord El Chapo now rests with US jury
NEW YORK (AP) — After nearly three months of testimony about a vast drug-smuggling conspiracy steeped in violence, a jury began deliberations Monday at the U.S. trial of the infamous Mexican drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman...
January 28, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Campbell County school shooter Kenneth Bartley doesn’t want hometown jury in latest trial
Kenneth Bartley is a household name in Campbell County — for all the wrong reasons, his attorney says.
At the age of 14, he fatally shot an assistant principal and wounded two other Campbell County Comprehensive High School administrators. That was 2005 and just the beginning of headlines for Bartley.
January 14, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Kobach grand jury process to begin next week in Douglas County
Grand jury proceedings to investigate former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach’s office will begin next week in Douglas County District Court, according to the judge presiding over them.
Judge Kay Huff said that the proceedings would begin in her courtroom on Jan. 22, a Tuesday, following Martin Luther King Jr. Day...
January 7, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Fatal shooting case against officer heads to grand jury
NASHVILLE — The case against a white Nashville police officer in the fatal shooting of a black man went to a grand jury Monday, a step punctuated by days of heated rhetoric by the attorneys.
A Nashville judge found probable cause to send officer Andrew Delke’s case to the grand jury. Delke is charged in the July shooting of 25-year-old Daniel Hambrick, who had a handgun as he ran from the officer...
January 9, 2019 | Citizen Juries
Want to help make government better? Try signing up for Sacramento County grand jury
Sacramento Superior Court is recruiting volunteers for its 2019-20 grand jury.
The panel gleaned from a cross-section of Sacramento County is charged with reviewing and investigating local governmental activities within the county, from city and county government to schools and special districts...
December 3, 2018 | Citizen Juries
Jury selected in Northampton County serial rape trial
The trial of a Northampton County man accused of serially raping women will begin Tuesday…
December 3, 2018 | Citizen Juries
Jury sentences man to life in fatal shooting
A Bowie County jury handed down a life sentence Friday for a Texarkana man who shot and killed another at a gas station in February…
December 3, 2018 | Citizen Juries
Hamblen man indicted by federal grand jury
Deron Jamal Brashers is the latest Hamblen County resident to transition from state criminal court into U.S. District Court in Greeneville, according to court documents…
December 3, 2018 | Citizen Juries
Iowans can now complete jury questionnaires online
Iowans will no longer receive paper jury questionnaires in the mail with summons to report for jury duty...
December 3, 2018 | Citizen Juries
Jury duty scam threatens arrest unless you pay up
A St. Clair Shores man was recently duped out of $1,000 through a scam in which a caller representing himself as a Macomb County sheriff’s deputy threatened to arrest him unless he paid fines for missing jury duty…
December 1, 2018 | Citizen Juries
Grand jury: Dallas officer’s shooting of neighbor was murder
A former Dallas police officer was indicted on a murder charge Friday, nearly three months after she fatally shot an unarmed neighbor…
November 29, 2018 | Citizen Juries
Jury begins hearing testimony in Charlottesville Trial
Statements began Thursday in Charlottesville, Va., in the trial of the man accused of using his car to ram counter-protesters during a "Unite the Right" rally in August 2017, in which one person died…
| Citizen Juries
Calcasieu DA responds to billboards
LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - "It is what it is." Those five words are now plastered on billboards along with Calcasieu Parish District Attorney John DeRosier's face around the Lake Area.