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To think that if people are forced to do Jury service...

(95 Posts)
Pseudonym99 Mon 29-Jul-13 19:21:42

...against their will, then you cannot expect them to take it seriously, abide by the rules and they shouldn't be held responsible when they break those rules? And how can it be in the interests of justice to have jurors there who do not take it seriously or do not want to be there?

beatback Mon 29-Jul-13 21:53:36

Imagine you are Red Haired Northener called Tyler/Chardonnay and you have this mis fourtune to have "Katie Hopkins" as Foreman of the Jury.

prettybird Mon 29-Jul-13 22:00:46

I've had to serve on a jury twice and recently been called a third time (but fortunately was discharged without ever having to go in, as it was High Court so had the potential to be a long one) within the last 17 years. It's a pain - but it is a civic duty.

I do get the impression though that so many people are now being exempted that people like dh (4 times in 18 years) and me get called repeatedly - or maybe it's just bad luck. hmm

SisterMonicaJoan Mon 29-Jul-13 22:03:48

If juries so not understand the complexity of cases such a fraud, then the prosecuting team are not really doing their job. It is the Crown's repsonsibilty to present the case so a layman can understand it, so it is seen to be transparent. I obviously appreciate that not everyone will "get it" but if most of the jury do, then the presentation of the case was adequate.

Professional juries worry me, it's slippery slope if we start allowing them.

I think it's worth mentioning that juries can be the last bastion to unjust laws and the verdicts of the jury can sometimes show where the law is lacking.

IShallCallYouSquishy Mon 29-Jul-13 22:07:27

I bloody loved jury duty. I want to do it again!

IShallCallYouSquishy Mon 29-Jul-13 22:07:44


beatback Mon 29-Jul-13 22:10:32

You need to have people on Jury"s who have at least the abilty to reason and listen to what is being said. Someone said "Professional Jury"s are an affront to Demorcacy and would prefer to be Tried by a Jury made up of characters from Hancocks Half hour or Halfwits from today.

Bowlersarm Mon 29-Jul-13 22:13:48

Do you think by now YABU OP?

DoJo Mon 29-Jul-13 22:25:37

YABU - it's a privilege to live in a country where the legal system allows the involvement of the individual.

StuntGirl Mon 29-Jul-13 22:31:31

"If you were Unfortunate to have to go to Crown Court (Not your Fault) or innocent of the charges and your fate was in the hands of 12 people on a jury with 3 people half a sleep, 1 person texting 2 people who cant speak english properly, or understand what is being said."

Beatback, those who don't speak or understand English are exempt. For the very obvious reasons.

OP and everyone who agreed with you YABVU.

Chippednailvarnish Mon 29-Jul-13 22:40:54

I did two weeks jury service earlier this year, I hated it and it cost me a fortune.
With that in mind OP, I think your post is one of the most stupid things I have read on MN for a long time. How on earth would you select a jury of the defendents peers if jury service was optional?

And the four jurys I sat on didn't have a single incident of "3 people half a sleep, 1 person texting 2 people who cant speak english properly, or understand what is being said".

prettybird Mon 29-Jul-13 22:41:00

If you're in Scotland, you need fifteen people for the jury! maybe that's why I've been called so often

ComposHat Mon 29-Jul-13 22:43:11

yep I've be called numerous times. I live in Scotland. I think a higher proportion of cases are tried by jury in Scotland too.

Mumoftwoyoungkids Mon 29-Jul-13 22:48:40

I think there are some people who do struggle with the idea of jury duty - as they feel only god should judge for example.

In WW2 those who were concientous objectors were generally sent to drive ambulances somewhere incredibly dangerous (where you were far more likely to die than by fighting on average) which meant that only those who truly did object declared themselves as objectors.

There should be a similar for juror objectors. You can be a juror or you can go and clean the loos in the courthouse for two weeks - that sort of thing.

I don't think there should be professional jurors but I do think that those who are keen to serve should be more likely to get picked. Maybe have their name put in the system twice for example - so that instead of getting called every 20 years on average they are called every 10 years.

prettybird Mon 29-Jul-13 22:59:06

If only it were every 20 years - dh and I seem to be called every 5 to 6 years sad

Once I got called after 4 years - was able to delay that and further delay it be telling them that at the point that I was eligible to be called again, I would be breast feeding and would therefore require facilities to express and store my EBM grin For some reason they left it another two years before calling me again wink

Mumoftwoyoungkids Mon 29-Jul-13 23:11:35

My parents - aged 65 and 61 - have been called 3 times between them. Dh and I (aged 36 and 33) have never been called and nor has db (aged 31). So of the 135 years of eligibility we have had we have only been called 3 times - once every 45 years.

We are all in England.

I've just googled and can't find an answer to how often though.

DespicableWee Mon 29-Jul-13 23:12:39

mumoftwoyoungkids if you put your name in extra times, do you get an extra wheelie bin or your pot holes fixed quicker, like a sort of tesserae?

HeartsTrumpDiamonds Mon 29-Jul-13 23:20:45

I'm not allowed to do jury service (bipolar therefore ineligible):

a person would be ineligible for jury service if they are:
- concerned with the administration of justice, or
- are a member of the Forces, or
- are suffering from a mental disorder within the meaning of the Mental Health (NI) order 1986, or
- they are unable to understand the English language.

And actually I feel quite bad about it. I was called and would have done it but had to tick the box. It's an odd feeling when one of your civic responsibilities is taken away from you (although I do understand it. I wouldn't want me in one of my manic phases on my jury grin) At least I'm allowed to vote....

prettybird Mon 29-Jul-13 23:22:45

I first got called when I was c.35. They've made up for it since though! grin

In Scotland (don't know about England), you "have the right to be excused from jury service, for example, because of your occupation if you are a politician, a doctor, a minister, in the armed forces or have served on a jury in the last five years."

IneedAsockamnesty Mon 29-Jul-13 23:37:04


Its your duty as a member of society

Norfolknway Mon 29-Jul-13 23:44:08

I'm waiting for the day I get asked.

It all sounds so exciting grin clearly I have a very dull life

SeeJaneWin Mon 29-Jul-13 23:49:06

Unfortunately, a lot of people a) do not take serious things seriously, b) do not understand full implications of the internet, c) are prone to overshare.

They are victims of the age. And far from the last.

ComposHat Mon 29-Jul-13 23:53:07

it isn't exciting at all (not on my case anyway) it was held in the sheriffs court and was a bunch of teenage boys who got into a ruck.

The defendant was found 'not proven' as the copper misrecorded a description in his notebook and there was some confusion about who saw what. In popular lore a verdict of not proven is thought to imply 'not guilty and don't fo it again.'

thebody Tue 30-Jul-13 00:00:13

I served at 18 and everyone there took it seriously,

don't get the description of some here.

it's a duty and a price well worth paying.

I don't want 'professional juries' thank you, there are enough bloody daft judges. trust the public.

RiceBurner Tue 30-Jul-13 00:21:05


Remotecontrolduck Tue 30-Jul-13 02:56:19


People need to grow up and take some responsibility. 'Don't want to be there'?! Move somewhere else then, if you live in the UK you have a duty to do.

I can't believe some people.

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