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to wonder how jurers do it

(25 Posts)
phantomnamechanger Mon 13-May-13 15:10:19

just been reading some of the details emerging in the April Jones case - how the hell do these jurers cope in cases like this. I would be in bits every day hearing what they are hearing - and seeing. I might actually throw up. Must be life changing for them. I hope they get some sort of counselling after all this. sad

sparklekitty Mon 13-May-13 15:56:40

I presume they are offered some sort of counselling after, just as the police officers involved would have been not that they ever take it, too much 'pride'

Fuckwittery Mon 13-May-13 15:57:32

i think i read that they had standby jurors listening to the evidence in case any of the actual jurors felt that they couldn't go on sad

HoHoHoNoYouDont Mon 13-May-13 16:02:44

It will be heartbreaking for them but at least they'll have some peace of mind in knowing that when they find the evil fecker guilty and send him down they will have got the evil scum off the streets away from other kids. I hope they get all the support they need though.

freddiefrog Mon 13-May-13 16:17:16

I don't know how they do it either.

I've just acted as an appropriate adult whilst my foster child was giving a statement regarding abuse when they were younger. I came out of there wanting to rip the bastard's head off, it was heartbreaking. Fortunately, I was given a counsellor to sound off to afterwards

NomDeOrdinateur Mon 13-May-13 16:25:21

I feel terrible for them, it must be a deeply harrowing and life-changing experience.

I've often wondered - if you have a history of mental health problems which makes you confident that you wouldn't be able to make it through a trial (for any violent crime) without jeopardising your own well being, are you likely to be excused? Does the court have a duty of care towards jurors which extends to protecting their mental health during the trial (rather than helping to restore it afterwards)?

HumphreyCobbler Mon 13-May-13 16:26:27

I often think about this. And dread it happening to me.

ithaka Mon 13-May-13 16:29:41

I know jurors who have sat through harrowing trials can be excused jury duty in the future. It must be horrific to have to view some of the evidence.

thebody Mon 13-May-13 16:34:35

I did jury service as an 18 year old so was the youngest on the jury.

It was a serious assault charge on a police officer and I found it both fascinating and thrilling.

I was a kid and it wasn't too gory.

I can't imagine how harrowing it would be now post children and much older to have to hear details of a child murder.

Truly horrific but they will have access to support and a jury is treated with huge respect and care.

At least they know they are helping to get one nasty bastard off the streets.

WestieMamma Mon 13-May-13 16:35:18

I didn't think they got any support because they'd be breaking the law if they discussed any of it with anyone else, either during or after the trial. sad

thebody Mon 13-May-13 16:35:39

Meant to add the police officer had fully recovered.

thebody Mon 13-May-13 16:36:23

They get support from each other though and after the verdict.

Tailtwister Mon 13-May-13 16:37:11

I often wonder the same OP. I would find anything involving children extremely difficult. I don't know if I could cope. Hopefully I'll never get to find out.

PeterParkerSays Mon 13-May-13 16:39:13

I don't think they get support. I remember a woman giving an interview on the radio about a very disturbing case she was on the jury for (the victim was shot by her partner and, because of the injuries the call handler thought she was a child learning to speak, rather than a badly injured adult, and kept asking her to get her mummy or another grown up) and how she wasn't able to access support to talk through the issues and how she couldn't discuss it with her family.

You can get excused from doing jury service if you have mental health problems and when it comes to being chosen for a particular trial you can also ask to be excused on any reasonable grounds although you won't know what the trial is until you are sworn in, only the likely length. I met someone recently who was sworn in on a potentially long, fairly gruesome trial and she was excused on the second day after suffering nigtmares and fearing she wouldn't cope.

I've done jury service twice, neither time has been on a hard, high profile case, but the first one was a murder and every detail is still etched on my mind 5 years later. I wasn't traumatised as such, but it was a long time till I stopped thinking about it regularly, I have often wondered how people cope with the most upsetting cases.

As regards support, the trial I was on we all became quite close and some kept in touch. Once the trial is over you can discuss it, but you cannot discuss what was said amongst the jurors during deliberation.

thebody Mon 13-May-13 16:48:32

Peter, support was offered to us, this was in 1984.

In life things are bloody hard to deal with but there most definatly support out there.

In my experience as a juror we were treated with the upmost respect by court officials.

BMW6 Mon 13-May-13 19:13:38

Judges have often excused Jurors from any future jury service when they have tried harrowing cases like this. The Judge announces it at the verdict I believe, when he/she thanks the Jury for their service.

sarahtigh Mon 13-May-13 19:25:06

you can discuss the case after and the harrowing details that were mentioned in courtroom as that is public and to get counselling about what you heard and saw as evidence; what you can not discuss is the jurors deliberations and how you reached the verdict, the details of case are generally by then public knowledge it is just what happens in jurors room that you can''t discuss so you would be able to discuss the details of case and if you were on april jones case you could discuss what was in bridgers house and how you were having nightmares about being shown bits of skull etc

BegoniaBampot Mon 13-May-13 19:27:32

I've thought of this but hope i never get called, ever.

The reason you can't discuss it during the trial is not because it is secret (anyone can go to the public gallery and hear it) but to stop anyone else influencing your verdict. So the jurors can discuss it amongst themselves but with no one else, which is hard even if it's not a gruelling case.

MummytoKatie Mon 13-May-13 20:00:22

My grandfather was a juror on a case involving a horrific road crash with a drunk driver (pre-breathalyser) and several fatalities including children.

He was about 40 at the time.

After that until his death (in his 80s) he never drank more than half a glass of wine in an evening including at both his sons' weddings.

He was affected forever and that case was nowhere near as bad as the child murder ones.

HollyBerryBush Mon 13-May-13 20:48:02

You can reject cases as a juror - ie if you were on a rape case and had been raped yourself, you would not be impartial.

That's at the discretion of the judge though isn't it? You can't just reject the case yourself, only put to the judge the reasons why you would be impartial or otherwise unable to fulfil the role of juror on a particular case and let them decide.

Sorry that happened to your grandfather Mummy.

FrogInABog Wed 15-May-13 22:52:23

How likely are you to be called for jury service? Do most people at some point, or is it fairly unlikely?

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