Civil Liberties

Jurors Acquit Suspect, Then Give Him Their Jury Pay

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Interesting story from Cleveland:

Jurors are so convinced that a Cleveland teen should not have been charged with assaulting another teen that they've gone beyond acquitting him. A few are writing angry letters to police and intend to donate their jury pay to him. At least three jurors plan to give the $100 they received to sit on the jury to defendant Demrick McCloud, 19, if McCloud earns a high school equivalency degree. They took only 30 minutes to find him not guilty in their deliberations Friday.

Most of the jury could not be reached for comment, but three members complained of a "sheer lack of evidence."

They said the prosecution's case hinged on the victim identifying McCloud as an attacker. But the victim also had told police he was certain another boy—later found to be in school at the time—was one of the assailants.

As they were leaving the courthouse, jurors Ana de Freitas Boe, an English professor at Baldwin-Wallace College; Jeanne Knotek, an obstetrician and gynecologist; and alternate juror Richard Nagin discussed ways to help McCloud.

The three have committed to donating their jury stipend to a fund for McCloud. Boe said the amount is too small to compensate McCloud for his jail time, but the jurors intend it as a "show of support."

"He seemed like a decent kid who was falsely accused," Nagin said.

I don't think I've ever read about this kind of indignation from a jury before, but it's nice to see.

The case against McCloud was brought by the office of Cuyahoga County Prosecutor William Mason. The Cleveland Plain-Dealer published a long investigation of Mason last year, finding hundreds of cases brought with what legal observers interviewed for the story said was little or no evidence. The investigation also found that Mason's office brought an unusually high number of cases that were dismissed by judges for insufficient evidence before ever reaching a jury.

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  1. Does anyone pay attention to who they elect for District Attorney?

    1. I vote against my local state attorney every time. No luck yet.

  2. Nice. Too bad they didn’t swear out a warrant for the scumbag D.A.

    I’m afraid of the size of the flying nut kick to come that this good news is trying to compensate for in advance.

  3. I can’t wait to read Radley’s update on this story, so I can see all the serious consequences that the DAs office will suffer for wasting taxpayer money, the court’s time, and harassing innocent students.

    1. C’mon update! Where’s that darn update?!?

    2. Ha, not until we see the DAs office wasting more taxpayer money and the court’s time in an effort to harass disobedient jurors!

    3. I think my sarcasm meter just exploded.

      1. Nope, that was me. Sorry

    4. What are you talking about? The poor guy already had to take a hit to his conviction rate!

  4. Hey, if you’re innocent, you have nothing to fear, right?

  5. I know you didn’t do it, but I can convince a jury that you did. Besides, since you can’t afford an attorney you’re going to get a public defender (who works for me).

    If this goes to court you go to jail.

    I’ll tell you what. Plead guilty to a lesser charge and I’ll make it go away. Don’t and I can guarantee you’ll be in jail for a long, long time.

  6. Threadjack: new status update from one of my college classmates who has a real hate-on for libertarians:

    “Anarchy is the 20 minute period between the fall of the government and the linebacker with the shotgun telling you he’d like your house.

    Libertarianism is the 20 minute period between the privatization of all government services and the linebacker in the business suit with the shot gun telling you his boss would like your house.”

    wut

    1. Wait, so libertarians are linebackers? I had no idea Brian Urlacher wore a monocle.

      1. He did, but then Bas Rutten took it away from him.

    2. I had no idea that libertarians opposed government enforcement of contract rights. Wow, we’re such assholes!

    3. “Republocratism/Democanism is the 20min period between election cycles where a bipartisan gov’t can most rapidly invalidate your property rights.”

      (I couldn’t come up with a direct mad-lib from his bs.)

      1. What have you done with the linebacker?!?

        1. Leave the money-filled briefcase at the agreed location, and you won’t have to find out.

    4. He knows we all own rifles, right?

    5. What do linebackers do/wear during the time interval that is called federalism?

      1. What do linebackers do/wear during the time interval that is called federalism?

        They negotiate their collective bargaining agreement.

    6. So he has absolutely no understanding of what libertarians are about. What a surprise.

      1. Also, it seems that he thinks linebackers are thieves.

        1. So do the owners.

      2. Point me to a leftist who hates libertarianism who does understand what it’s about. Fucking pretty please, with sugar on top.

        1. I think some do know, Warty. And that’s in fact why they hate it.

          1. I used to read gun boards with some regularity, and got great amusement out of the TEAM RED libertarian-hatredy. The best is when they call us Objectivists.

            1. We wouldn’t be hated by both TEAM RED and TEAM BLUE if we weren’t doing something right.

              1. We wouldn’t be doing our jobs if TEAM COSMOTARIAN did not hate us, too.

                I would not be doing my job if I failed to asseverate the fact that the monopolization of contract enforcement is NOT a pillar of libertarian philosophy.

              2. Threatening their power and their ability to steal money?

            2. The haters call the kettle black.

              1. Yes, dipshit, I hate the teams and their partisans. Thanks for pointing that out and pretending like you have a point, you fucking failure.

    7. Man, I went to buy some food, and a linebacker showed and pointed a gun at me. Now he has my house!

      Hey, this is actually a fun game. Let me try:

      Collective bargaining is the twenty minutes in between you trying to run a business and the linebacker in the SEIU shirt with the shotgun telling you his boss would like a cut of all your workers’ paychecks.

    8. Not really a threadjack so much as it belongs in the eminent domain thread.

    9. Statism is the eternal condition in which an ex-linebacker, now employed by the treasury department and armed with a shotgun, informs you that you’ve broken some tax regulation passed last week and you need to surrender your house in back taxes or go to jail and lose the house anyway.

      The war on drugs is the 50 year period in which a linebacker in a police uniform with a shotgun kicks in your door, shoots your dog, sends you jail for a single stem in your trash (possession with intent to distribute), and seizes your assets under forfeiture rules.

      This is fun! Let’s do some more!

    10. Also, this is why you shouldn’t use Facebook – it exposes you to the moronic ideas of your mouthbreathing friends. Plus, you have to do extra work to keep your mom from seeing your drunk pictures. Fuck that shit.

  7. The investigation also found that Mason’s office brought an unusually high number of cases that were dismissed by judges for insufficient evidence before ever reaching a jury.

    Do the police officers who make the arrests play Dirty Cop Baseball? No matter, what counts here is the DA is tough on crime and takes a proactive approach!

  8. This story is incredibly effective publicity for jury nullification.

    1. *GAG ORDER*

      1. More to the point, what can the judge charge these jurors with? There has to be some way for him to punish them for this. Maybe sick a code inspector on them?

        1. I’m sure the DA could think of something.

          1. and how!

  9. Maybe the prosecutor’s pay during the time McLoud was in jail should be given to the teen. In fact, that should be mandatory for this level of injustice.

  10. Was this issue discussed by Nick and Drew Carey with the Cleveland city council?

    Sounds like a really good reason NOT to live in Cleveland.

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  12. How did two persons with doctorate degrees end up on a single jury? I thought lawyers knew better than to allow anyone with an education sit on a jury.

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