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Sinner saved by grace. Wife to a cute preacher. Momma to 2 precious baby boys. Blessed beyond measure. And I deserve none of it.

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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Jury Duty

So once we finally got home from all of our trips, low and behold I had jury duty. I was dreading it! I did have some friends that were able to choose the same week so I knew I wouldn't be alone... or so I thought.

Monday rolls around.... I left bright and early to make sure I didn't get stuck in traffic. Of course, there was none the day I left plenty of extra time for it and I was there like 40 minutes early. :) Good problem to have since I wasn't really sure where I was going to park. There are several lots and garages that are fairly cheap... but they aren't close to the court house. So being the Sheila that I have become.... I decided it was worth the $8 to park directly across the street and feel safe.

I parked and walked into the building feeling like such an adult. I have moments that I still feel 16. Then there are other times when I'm dealing with a doctor's office or walking to jury duty when I realize I have indeed grown up.

After listening to an hour and a half introduction.... I thought I was going to die... not really but I had to go to the bathroom so bad! Lesson #1 Pee before going in for the jury introduction... it lasts what feels like and eternity. After role call, I finally slipped out thankful for a potty break. As I walked back in they were calling the first pool of jurors. My hoping for a day of simply reading a great book came to a screeching hault when I heard, "Candace Jerkins." What?! I got called?!

The 40 of us walked out of the room and filled out a piece of paper about ourselves. Then we walked over to the court house and waited an hour and a half for them to come tell us they had taken us to the wrong court. We were suppose to go to 201 not the the actual courthouse. They messed up. Great start. So we get to the correct building and they call 20ish names to be questioned for the jury. Again my name was called.... I was shocked. We walked in to a real court room and sat in the jurors chairs.... it was becoming real. Though I had no idea what to expect I was loving every second! After some casual questioning they picked the jury they wanted and I was apart of it. Juror #6 to be exact.... so said my badge. After an afternoon of giving us a law review, we were dismissed for the day.

The next day I weighed the options of the $8 parking and again safety/convenience won over price. It was so wonderful to park, walk directly across the street, go through the metal detectors, and then meet in our jurors room sweat free. Before we knew it we were called to the court room. We heard from both attorneys, saw the evidence, and heard from the witnesses. This was real. I was apart of it. Yet very glad I did not go into this profession.

So then it was Wednesday, we have now learned the defendent shot at his girl friends car after she wouldn't give him his clothes that were in her trunk. A month later when the police went with a warrant to pick him up, he was found at another girls apartment. (the one he was cheating with which led to the first dispute) After 15 minutes, the girl came to the door. They searched the apartment and found him hiding in the REFRIGERATOR. When asked what he was doing he replied, "Just chillin'." I am so serious. The whole courtroom died laughing!

We took a lunch break and then once we had come back and were waiting the deputy came and shut our jurors door and said there was a minor crisis and we were on lockdown. What?! We looked out the window and there were several firetrucks and squad cars. Come to find out, a judge on our floor had opened a package and white powder went everywhere so it had to be tested. The judge came to our room and explained this to us. He gave us the option of staying around and finishing the trial that afternoon... not really knowing how long it would take or coming back the next day. We opted to finish that day. We soon learned that the defense attorney wasn't allowed in the building during lock down so no one could find him or get in touch with him so we had to go back the next day afterall.

So Thursday was the day. After being there all week, hearing all that we needed to it was time to make a decision.... oh but wait. They have to randomly draw 2 names for those 2 to be alternates.... basically meaning after all that time put into the trial they get dismissed. Wouldn't you know it.... I'm one of them! I was so bummed!!!! The judge thanked us for our time, gave us a certificate and told us we could stay and hear the verdict or go home.

I waited for a little while but not knowing how long the jury would deliberate I decided to go home. I actually knew one of the other jurors.... well, I graduated with his wife so I just messaged her to have her get the info from her husband.

Sadly, the verdict was not guilty. There wasn't enough evidence to prove he had a gun and he made the shot.... even though he was just chillin' in the frig. :)

It was a very fun expereince. So those of you dreading it... its nothing to sweat.

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