Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Wednesday Jury Duty

Today I started jury duty at 100 Centre Street -- the Criminal Court Building in New York City.

When I first got the summons for September 11 this year, we were planning to stay at Heart Lake for several weeks so I took advantage of an automatic deferment option. I was presented with the choice of deferring for anywhere from two to six months. I knew we would back in New York in November, so I chose to defer for two months.

The work on my dental implants is taking place only on Wednesdays, and I knew when I got the jury notice for November 12 that if I got on a case there was a likelihood that I would be tied up not only today (a Wednesday) but also next Wednesday. As it happens, I am currently part of a group undergoing voir dire on a case that is scheduled to hear evidence next Wednesday. I have an appointment next Wednesday and if I get on the jury I will have to reschedule it. I will know by the end of tomorrow whether I am on the jury or not.

Over the years, I have been on several juries -- the ones that stand out in my memory are murder, drug sales, and robbery in state criminal court and two interesting federal cases: a complaint against the City of New York and several corrections officers of assault on a prisoner and a wire fraud case (involving gold plated silver replicas of Chinese gold panda coins) before Judge Michael Mukasey.

I have also been empaneled but not selected on several cases, too. So I really don't care whether I am chosen -- on the one hand, a trial is fun, on the other hand, I have plenty to do and I don't need to be on a trial for entertainment.

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