Canada Bars Former Jurors from Talking About a Case — For Life. Does This Prolong Juror PTSD?
The Canadian Bar Association's publication National asserts:
The law [Sec.649 of the Criminal Code] is meant to protect the integrity of the trial process and preserve public confidence in the justice system — but an unintended and unfortunate consequence of this is it leaves suffering ex-jurors with no way to process the experience. Conservative MP Michael Cooper tabled a bill last year to exempt discussions with mental health professionals from the Sec. 649 ban; it died in the Senate. Now, two senators are trying to bring it back via the Red Chamber.
The article recounts several horror stories from former jurors.
Harvey Weinstein Trial Update: Final Jury Contains an Author Writing a Novel About Predatory Older Men
In the closing hour of jury selection, with no more peremptory strikes available to the defense, Judge James Burke denied a defense motion to strike for cause Juror #11, who is writing a novel about “predatory” older men and their relationships with younger women. Fox 43 TV News reports that Harvey Weinstein, “his attorneys, and even some members of the press . . . appeared shocked” by the ruling. Add that to the “appealable issues” list?
Is It Proper to Allow Jurors to Visit a Passenger Train Murder Scene? The Answer Is Now Available
The January 3, 2020 edition of the Jur-E Bulletin reported that the defendant in a homicide case wanted the jurors to visit the crime scene — a passenger train car. On January 13, Oregon Circuit Court Judge Cheryl Albrecht announced her ruling. Because there have been numerous death threats against the defendant, she determined such a visit would pose great risks to the defendant’s life or to the safety of others who are near him if he ventures outside the courthouse or jail. Further, she found this risk would be exacerbated by likely media reports announcing the tour of the train car.
Alaska Starts Summoning Jurors by Email
The court system asserts the new method will reduce costs and elevate efficiency.
Corporate Exec Loves Petit Jury Duty but Bemoans Grand Jury Duty
In a thoughtful op-ed piece in the Lockport Union-Sun and Journal, the vice president of Confer Plastics, Inc. bemoans the unreasonable burdens that grand jury duty places on citizens and their employers. He also provides cogent reasons for reform, while recognizing it is a steep, uphill battle.