Tag Archives | Court

Professor Faces Trial For Distributing Jury Nullification Pamphlets

JURY1-popupNew York has arrested and brought charges against an eccentric retired chemistry professor who frequently stands outside of federal court and informs passersby about ‘jury nullification’, a controversial practice in which jurors disregard laws they disagree with. Is Julian P. Heicklen a hooligan or hero? Either way, he’s extremely cranky, the New York Times found:

Since 2009, Mr. Heicklen has stood there and at courthouse entrances elsewhere and handed out pamphlets encouraging jurors to ignore the law if they disagree with it, and to render verdicts based on conscience.

That concept, called jury nullification, is highly controversial, and courts are hostile to it. But federal prosecutors have now taken the unusual step of having Mr. Heicklen indicted on a charge that his distributing of such pamphlets at the courthouse entrance violates a law against jury tampering.

Mr. Heicklen was arraigned on Friday in a somewhat contentious hearing before Judge Kimba M.

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Montana Jurors Stage ‘Marijuana Mutiny’

AFC_Missoula_Montana When draconian drug laws linger on the books, it may be up to juries to rebel by refusing to convict people of crimes such as marijuana possession — a Missoula, MT jury did just that. The New York Times reports:

Marijuana fans are calling it the Mutiny in Montana.

It all began last Thursday, when a group of prospective jurors in Missoula were seated for a two-day trial of a repeat offender by the name of Teuray Cornell, whom the local police had arrested and charged with sellingmarijuana, a felony, and possession of a small amount of the drug, a misdemeanor.

To seat a 12-person jury, Judge Robert L. Deschamps III of Missoula County District Court had called a passel of Montanans to serve, and 27 had arrived at court on Dec. 16. So far, so good.

But after the charges were read, one of the jurors raised a hand. “She said, ‘I’ve got a real problem with these marijuana cases,’ ” Judge Deschamps recalled on Wednesday.

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Agnostic Father Stripped Of Custody Of Kids

The court system has spoken, and it says, if you’re not Christian, you’re not fit to be a parent. A divorced veteran in Indiana says he lost custody of his children, with a judge’s ruling explaining, “the father did not participate in the same religious training as the mother…father was agnostic.”

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Brain-Injured Woman Gains Right To Testify

A woman obtained brain injuries when being hit with a puck at a hockey game. It’s been fourteen years, but finally she has been allowed to testify in court. Some thought that the injury may have skewed her memory. If she can still remember that she’s holding a grudge after fourteen years, I’m sure she remembers why. From The Chronicle Herald:

A Debert woman left severely disabled after a puck hit her in the head while she was watching a hockey game at the local arena 14 years ago will be allowed to testify when her negligence lawsuit goes to trial in November.

Justice Kevin Coady, in a ruling that Nova Scotia Supreme Court released Thursday, rejected a motion by the operator of the West Colchester Arena in Debert that would have kept Louitta Fisher from testifying.

Murray Ritch, lawyer for the West Colchester Recreation Association, argued at a Sept.

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