Just when I was about to illegally divulge the details of my ongoing trial, risk GOING TO JAIL all to be a trailblazing journalist who thinks that a blogger has the right to pontificate on the goings-on of the deliberations of 12 men and women determining the future of one mugger (I’m sorry, alleged future of one mugger), just then! . . . the case comes to an end and now I’m legally (read: boringly) allowed to discuss any and all events that took place. In other words, it’s just not that exciting anymore.
But know that New York is safer because of the work I’ve done, that there is one less mugger at the 116th Street subway station, bringing the revised grand total to approximately 2,999. And know that I was a crucial part in the deliberations, the one sitting at the end of the table opposite the one guy who was “iffy” on the evidence, staring at him with that look on my face that says, “You’re not cool unless you vote guilty.”
Actually, just in case anyone from my jury reads this, I want to make it clear that I was on an awesome jury. We covered every age group, almost every race and definitely every range on the sense of humor scale (Me: “So we should all hang out again sometime.” Old woman across from me: “Huh?”); and yet we got along famously and shared just about as many laughs as we did legal barbs. Thank you, Jury for Part 39, for being so awesome.
And for you all, a few things the experience taught me:
– If you’re going to mug someone while wearing a fluorescent orange jersey, change your clothes after you are done. It makes you “less recognizable” when you fall asleep on a park bench three blocks away.
– If you find yourself acting as defense counsel for a crack addict, and the assistant district attorney makes no mention of your client being a crack addict, don’t voluntarily ask a police officer during cross examination, “And isn’t it true that you found a crack pipe with significant residue on my client?” Unless, of course, what you’re trying to do is get a room full of 12 people swapping crack addict stories.
– If you find yourself on jury duty, during the day of deliberations hold out until approximately 12:50, even if you have a verdict. By that time the court has already ordered lunch for you, meaning that you can take it “to go” after you condemn a man to prison.
– Again, if you are going to mug someone, and you plan on using your fingers underneath your shirt to make it seem as though you have a gun, you may as well actually have a gun because it’s first degree robbery either way. At least if you actually have the gun you can, you know, shoot someone if you have to.
– And finally, if you get the chance to partake in jury duty, you really should do it. It’s a surprisingly interesting experience and really very empowering, which, if your life (and girlfriend) is anything like mine, is a rare sensation. Plus the next time you’re watching “Law & Order” with your friends, you can impress them by saying things like, “Voir dire is sooo passé. And they never get the rules of evidence right on these shows! Gawd.”