Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Jury Duty Some 40 Years Ago

Steve in the Texas town of Conroe , I was called to jury duty. It was a black woman who had killed her abusive husband. When 12 of us were chosen, I was picked as jury foreman as I was the only person there with a college degree. I expected to hear "the N Word" all the time. I expected to encounter a lynch-mob mentality..Much to my pleasant surprise, just the opposite happened. The "N-word" was never mentioned. In fact, the lady's race was never discussed. Each juror was serious and somber. After a week-long trial, we found her guilty of involuntary manslaughter. We got to choose the penalty. We took into account all of the domestic abuse and degradation that she had suffered over the years. We gave her five-year's probation. If she completed the 5-year probation with no problems, her criminal record would be expunged. Sadly in California, she would have been found guilty of second degree murder and sentenced to 15-20 years to life.

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