Juries

Juror dismissed for complaining about length of trial, pronouncing defendants guilty


A juror in a Pennsylvania home invasion trial has been dismissed for complaining about how long the trial was taking and for prematurely pronouncing the defendants “guilty.”

The woman, identified only as juror 11, left a voice mail on a court official’s phone wanting to know how much longer the trial was going to take because it was interfering with a planned trip to Atlanta, the Express Times reports.

“Those kids are guilty anyways,” she said, referring to the three co-defendants, accused of robbing a townhouse in Phillipsburg in 2012, armed with a handgun, brass knuckles and a machete.

The soon-to-be-dismissed juror, who met behind closed doors with the judge and lawyers in the case, also reportedly said that she had told another juror the three defendants “had no defense.”

One defendant’s lawyer asked for a mistrial, saying it was “highly unlikely” the defense would receive a fair trial. He was joined by the prosecutor, who said the jury appeared to have been tainted by the discussions that took place in the jury room.

But another defense lawyer wanted the trial to continue, saying he didn’t think the jury had been tainted by anything they discussed.

Judge Ann Bartlett agreed. “There is no indication they heard or said anything to indicate favor to one side or the other,” she said.

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