Jurors can know nisch!

afternoonquil

Apology Ostrich
Apr 2, 2011
1,773
864
318
#2
I read Nietzche once, that shit wasn't even english yo. I fired that fucking book of the brooklyn bridge along with my beret.
 

Josh_R

Registered User
Jan 29, 2005
5,847
458
578
Akron, Ohio
#3
This is pure bullshit. I have read about this guy a few times. It is completely legal to use jury nullification and has a long history in our founding. These assholes just don't want regular people to be able to decide whether the laws are just.
 

Neon

ネオン
Donator
Mar 23, 2008
51,820
18,545
513
Kingdom of Charis
#4
That's very interesting, and I had no idea. If I heard about this story a week ago, I would have sided with the prosecutors, even though I'm an avid supporter of marijuana legalization. I just had no idea that was even legal. If it is, any conviction would be overturned on appeal. And if that's true, then fuck the prosecutors for wasting everyone's time just to try and intimidate people from doing something they are allowed to do.
 

Josh_R

Registered User
Jan 29, 2005
5,847
458
578
Akron, Ohio
#5
That's very interesting, and I had no idea. If I heard about this story a week ago, I would have sided with the prosecutors, even though I'm an avid supporter of marijuana legalization. I just had no idea that was even legal. If it is, any conviction would be overturned on appeal. And if that's true, then fuck the prosecutors for wasting everyone's time just to try and intimidate people from doing something they are allowed to do.
http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/zenger/nullification.html
Jury nullification occurs when a jury returns a verdict of "Not Guilty" despite its belief that the defendant is guilty of the violation charged. The jury in effect nullifies a law that it believes is either immoral or wrongly applied to the defendant whose fate they are charged with deciding.
The most famous nullification case is the 1735 trial of John Peter Zenger, charged with printing seditious libels of the Governor of the Colony of New York, William Cosby. Despite the fact that Zenger clearly printed the alleged libels (the only issue the court said the jury was free to decide, as the court deemed the truth or falsity of the statements to be irrelevant), the jury nonetheless returned a verdict of "Not Guilty."
Jury nullification appeared at other times in our history when the government has tried to enforce morally repugnant or unpopular laws. In the early 1800s, nullification was practiced in cases brought under the Alien and Sedition Act. In the mid 1800s, northern juries practiced nullification in prosecutions brought against individuals accused of harboring slaves in violation of the Fugitive Slave Laws. And in the Prohibition Era of the 1930s, many juries practiced nullification in prosecutions brought against individuals accused of violating alcohol control laws.

Juries clearly have the power to nullify; whether they also have the right to nullify is another question. Once a jury returns a verdict of "Not Guilty," that verdict cannot be questioned by any court and the "double jeopardy" clause of the Constitution prohibits a retrial on the same charge.
Early in our history, judges often informed jurors of their nullification right. For example, our first Chief Justice, John Jay, told jurors: "You have a right to take upon yourselves to judge [both the facts and law]." In 1805, one of the charges against Justice Samuel Chase in his impeachment trial was that he wrongly prevented an attorney from arguing to a jury that the law should not be followed.
 

Neon

ネオン
Donator
Mar 23, 2008
51,820
18,545
513
Kingdom of Charis
#6
Here's my question, though - It's impossible to determine the real reason you vote guilty or not guilty, so regarding personal choice, it's sorta legal by default. However, is publicly calling for people to do it intentionally ("it" being voting regardless of the facts in the cast) also covered by the same legality-by-default that applies to the individual act?
 

Josh_R

Registered User
Jan 29, 2005
5,847
458
578
Akron, Ohio
#7
Here's my question, though - It's impossible to determine the real reason you vote guilty or not guilty, so regarding personal choice, it's sorta legal by default. However, is publicly calling for people to do it intentionally ("it" being voting regardless of the facts in the cast) also covered by the same legality-by-default that applies to the individual act?
I think in the case of Julian Heicklen, they are getting him on jury tampering charges, because they say his intent is to influence the actual decisions of ACTIVE jurors. Most libertarian types believe that this is just the type of political advocacy that the Founders intended to protect when they wrote the First Amendment: political speech that the government may not like because it undercuts their authority. Now, I do believe that I remember reading that some judges will dismiss potential jurors if they even hint that they may approve of jury nullification and I think that judges have called mistrials because jurors snitched that one of the other jurors was advocating nullification.
Reason.com has a whole shitload of stories about jury nullification and this guy specifically.
http://reason.com/blog/2011/02/03/fully-isolated-jury-associatio
Fully Isolated Jury Association
Brian Doherty | February 3, 2011

Many libertarians embrace ye olde Anglo-Saxon belief that it is the jury's power and responsibility to judge the law as well as the facts--which is a quick way to get them kicked off juries when they reveal it, but that's not the point right now. The point is that courts tend to get really, really mad at people who inform/remind potential jurors of this power and responsibility. And in Florida, Judge Belvin Perry Jr. of the Ninth Judicial Circuit this week issues an order insisting that:

restriction upon expressive conduct and the dissemination of leaflets and other materials containing written information tending to influence summoned jurors as they enter the courthouse is necessary to serve the State’s compelling interest in protecting the integrity of the jury system;

and thus Judge Perry has barred

dissemination of all leaflets and other materials to summoned jurors containing written or pictorial information tending to influence summoned jurors, as well as approaching a summoned juror for the purpose of displaying a sign to, or engaging in oral protest, education or counseling with information tending to influence summoned jurors...on the Orange County Courthouse complex grounds....which includes the adjacent courthouse parking garage, the courthouse courtyard, and all other grounds surrounding the courthouse...

Since it is difficult to know beforehand who is or isn't a summoned juror on a courthouse ground, this in effect shuts up any communication with anyone on this significant matter of judicial philosophy. (We aren't talking about gentlemen, say, telling a juror that you'd best acquit Sammy the Snake if youse knows what's good for youse.)

The Fully Informed Jury Association (FIJA) is annoyed.

I've written in the past about the case of Antonio Musumeci, who had his camera taken for shooting on courthouse grounds. (His right to shoot was vindicated in court.) What he was shooting was police harassment of FIJA activist Julian Heicklen. Heicklen himself, according to his website Tyranny Fighter, has now been charged with jury tampering by a court in the Southern District of New York and after failing to show up for a hearing on the matter, has a warrant out for his arrest.
Laura Kriho, a Colorado University researcher, was charged with contempt of court after a May trial in which she was a dissenting juror in a 11-1 vote to find 19-year-old Michelle Brannon, guilty of possession of methamphetamine (State of Colorado v. Brannon). During deliberation, Kriho, who had looked up the possible penalty for the defendant on the Internet, discussed the sentencing implications of a guilty verdict with fellow jurors, and argued that drug cases were best handled by the community and the family, not the courts. One frustrated juror wrote a note to Gilpin County District Court Judge Kenneth Barnhill informing him that a juror had made comments and asking a juror could be replaced, but Barnhill had already dismissed alternate jurors. Judge Barnhill declared a mistrial without an inquiry and dismissed the jury.

Two months after the trial, Barnhill charged Kriho with contempt of court for disregarding his instructions not to discuss Brannon's potential punishment during deliberation. Kriho was also charged with perjury for failing to inform the court during jury selection about her long-held views against drug laws and a 1984 conviction for LSD possession when Kriho was 19, which prosecutors discovered during an investigation of Kriho's background after the mistrial. Deputy District Attorney Jim Stanley accused Kriho of obstructing justice with "widespread deception" about her agenda, revolving around her "firm belief that the drug laws in this country are wrong, and a jury has the right to change them." Stanley called Kriho's behavior "a threat to the foundation of the judicial system that cannot be tolerated."...
Grant said, "You have to go back to [the trial of William Penn in] 1670 to find a case in which the judge tried to punish jurors for returning a verdict he didn't like." A conviction "would send a message to jurors that they will be prosecuted if they hold out," said Grant. In a letter to the Colorado Daily (Boulder), Laura Kriho's parents, Ralph and Virginia Kriho, wrote, "No one will ever get a fair trial again if each juror has to worry about being prosecuted himself. It is difficult enough to get jurors to serve now, just because of the inconvenience and loss of wages" (Ralph and Virginia Kriho, "Our daughter is being punished," Colorado Daily (Boulder), September 16, 1996).
 

Neon

ネオン
Donator
Mar 23, 2008
51,820
18,545
513
Kingdom of Charis
#8
I think in the case of Julian Heicklen, they are getting him on jury tampering charges, because they say his intent is to influence the actual decisions of ACTIVE jurors. Most libertarian types believe that this is just the type of political advocacy that the Founders intended to protect when they wrote the First Amendment: political speech that the government may not like because it undercuts their authority. Now, I do believe that I remember reading that some judges will dismiss potential jurors if they even hint that they may approve of jury nullification and I think that judges have called mistrials because jurors snitched that one of the other jurors was advocating nullification.
Reason.com has a whole shitload of stories about jury nullification and this guy specifically.
http://reason.com/blog/2011/02/03/fully-isolated-jury-associatio
OK, so there is some controversy. That's what I was trying to figure out. Thanks.
 

THRILLHO

Registered User
Apr 5, 2009
886
1,123
348
Bothell, Wa.
#9
I was susposed to have jury duty the next two days but it was cancelled... I'm not telling the company I work for that, though. I was prepared to use jury nullification if I thought I needed to.
 

Josh_R

Registered User
Jan 29, 2005
5,847
458
578
Akron, Ohio
#10
OK, so there is some controversy. That's what I was trying to figure out. Thanks.
Yeah, it's kind of one of those unwritten things that has hung around since the early days. One of those particularly American things that makes us who we are and goes in the same vein as "get off my lawn" and "don't tread on me" and other cranky, "fuck the man" stuff.

I was susposed to have jury duty the next two days but it was cancelled... I'm not telling the company I work for that, though. I was prepared to use jury nullification if I thought I needed to.
I really wish I would get called up for jury duty. Most people see it as a hassle, but I think it's one of the most important civic duties that one can do. I would also be all for nullification if the case was right.
 

mascan42

Registered User
Aug 26, 2002
18,950
5,755
848
Ronkonkoma, Long Island
#11
The problem with jury nullification is that unless all 12 agree to it, it'll just end up with a hung jury. And nobody dares to bring it up in the jury room because one of the others could easily rat you out to the judge and get you thrown off the case.
 
Jan 9, 2006
4,561
11
228
Delmar, NY
#12
I really wish I would get called up for jury duty. Most people see it as a hassle, but I think it's one of the most important civic duties that one can do. I would also be all for nullification if the case was right.
With that attitude there's no way a defense attorney is going to want you on a jury. The last thing they want is a group of people that take the case seriously and listen to the facts.
 

Sunsetspawn

Registered User
Dec 5, 2005
2,955
410
328
#13
I really wish I would get called up for jury duty. Most people see it as a hassle, but I think it's one of the most important civic duties that one can do. I would also be all for nullification if the case was right.
Yeah, and then you end up on a burglary case where the "youth" is fucking guilty as hell. I don't think they let many weed cases get to trial anymore.