In 2018 a 4-year-old Pennsylvania boy was summoned for jury duty. He explained he had preschool that day and so could not serve. time.com/5243086/boy-summ…
Today I learned about the divorce trial of Leonard and Alice Rhinelander in 1924. The wealthy Leonard Rhinelander was ordered by his father to annul his marriage, so he claimed Alice lied about being white. Alice was ordered to show the jury her naked body. The jury decided she didn't lie about her mixed race. npr.org/sections/codeswit…
When a jury convicted Jane Wenham of witchcraft in 1712, due to witnesses accusing her of flying on a broomstick and bewitching servants, the sceptical judge refused to execute her and instead sought a royal pardon, noting that there was β€œno law against flying.” en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jan…
Scotland has an additional criminal verdict known as the 'barstard verdict' or 'not proven' as well as 'guilty' and 'not guilty'. The 'barstard verdict' can be used the jury when they feel the person is guilty, but not enough proofs have been shown by the crown. (It is treated as an aquittal). theconversation.com/scotl…
An 81 year old man called Giles Corey, accused of being a wizard in 1692, was the only man in American history to be subjected to death by pressing in an attempt to get him to submit to trial by jury. It is said that his response to the torture was to tell them to add 'more weight.' historyofmassachusetts.or…
In 2013, San Diego's City Attorney prosecuted a man for writing anti-bank messages in washable chalk on a public sidewalk. He faced 13 counts of vandalism and thousands of dollars in restitution. The jury acquitted him of all charges. sandiegoreader.com/weblog…
When FDR appointed Frances Perkins as Secretary of Labor in 1933, making her the first woman cabinet officer and entering her into the presidential line of succession, laws in a majority of states would still have prevented her from serving on a jury en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wom…
Today I learned of a Florida Man who asked to show his penis to the jury to bolster his defense that he accidentally asphyxiated his gf during oral sex local10.com/news/2017/05/…
In 1899 Pearl Hart "flirted with the jury, bending them to her will" and was acquitted even though she admitted robbing a stage coach. legendsofamerica.com/we-p…
Today I learned about Keith Cutler, a judge summoned to be a juror on a case he was presiding over. When he applied to be excused from jury service he was initially declined, and was told to write to the resident judge, to which he replied: "I am the resident judge." bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england…
Monty Python sued ABC over their censorship of season 4 of their show. ABC had cut punchlines and entire characters. The judge and jury watched two versions of a season 4 episode; a BBC one they laughed at, and an edited ABC one which no one laughed at. The judge ruled in ABC’s favour. montypython.com/tvshow_Mo…
Serial killer Ed Kemper befriended the very police officers investigating his murders, and would socialize with them at a bar called the β€œJury Room”. They called him β€œBig Ed” and never suspected him. When he initially confessed, they thought he was pulling a prank. tpgonlinedaily.com/dark-s…
US you do not actually have the right to a trial by jury unless the sentence is greater than 6 months nolo.com/legal-encycloped…
Today I learned of Harold Shipman, an English GP who is believed to be the most prolific serial killer in history. In 2000, a jury found Shipman guilty of the murder of 15 patients under his care, with his total number of victims estimated to be around 250. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Har…
Newton & Leibniz, both independently came up with Calculus at roughly the same time. To get the sole credit, the Royal Society acted as the jury, whose President was Newton. Newton even wrote a review on his own work to get the credit. However, the calculus notations that we use are from Leibniz youtu.be/LN--erHStqA
A jury of 12 black and 12 white men was recruited by United States Circuit Court in preparation for the trial of Jefferson Davis the president of the Confederation. In the end no trials took place, one reason being that if lost the decision could validate that secession was constitutional. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jef…
Will Ferrell performed for the sequestered OJ Simpson jury while a part of The Groundlings comedy troupe laweekly.com/will-ferrell…
In 1946, a black WWII veteran was taking a bus home in uniform, and asked the driver to stop for a bathroom break. The driver called the police, and the local chief of police arrested the man, beat him, and gouged out his eyes with a nightstick. The officer was acquitted by an all-white jury. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isa…
17 year old Bollywood star Priyanka Chopra was the first runner-up in Miss India 2000 competition because one of the jury members felt her complexion was β€œtoo dark” indianexpress.com/article…
Playboy Playmate Miss March 1957 Saundra Edwards killed her ex-husband with a shotgun blast through the heart when he broke into the house where she was staying. The jury ruled the shooting as justifiable homicide. The scandal, however, abruptly ended her acting career en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sau…
In a legal battle after the September 11th attacks, the leaseholder of the WTC claimed that he was owed double insurance payments, as each attack was a separate event, but lost in court, in which the jury decided it was actually one attack cnn.com/2004/LAW/04/29/at…
Today I learned of 'teen courts,' which are used to prosecute adolescents in which the jury is made up of teenagers in order to lower the number of repeat offenders en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tee…
During the trial that would lead his execution, Socrates chose death over dishonor by insulting the jury in the greatest way possible. When asked what his punishment should be, he said he deserves praise and that the city should throw him a large banquet in the olympic champions dining hall worldfuturefund.org/Repor…
After South Park aired the episode Chef Aid, the term 'Chewbacca Defense' entered the legal lexicon. The legal strategy aims to deliberately confuse juries than refute cases. The practice was widely used by lawyers before the episode, but South Park gave it a term. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Che…
One of the charges against Marie Antoinette included incestuous relations with her son Louis-Charles, who was forced to testify that his mother had molested him. After a two-day show trial, an all-male jury found the former queen guilty on all charges and unanimously condemned her to death. history.com/news/10-thing…
Today I learned about Nelly Bly, America’s first investigative journalist who faked being crazy and was sent to an asylum, where she experienced misdiagnosis, abuse, and harassment. In 1887, β€œBehind Asylum Bars” was printed. A grand jury investigation soon forced NYC to allocate more money for the mentally ill. pbs.org/newshour/nation/h…
Today I learned about the "Toxic woman" aka Gloria Ramirez who was admitted to Riverside hospital in So Cal in 1994. Staff who treated her began feeling ill and were hospitalised themselves. After numerous theories, chemical analyses and publications, the jury is still out on this very strange medical case discovermagazine.com/1995…
Germany started using jury trials the Middle Ages, but a constitutional crisis in 1924 led to an emergency decree abolishing juries and replacing them with the mixed system of judges and lay judges that is still used today. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jud…
A Wisconsin jury awarded $26M to an executive who was fired for discussing the Seinfeld episode featuring "Delores" with a female colleague. It was the largest award in Wisconsin history. corporate.findlaw.com/hum…
In 1987 a jury awarded Michael Donald's mother $7 million in damages against the United Klans of America after 4 members lynched her son in '81 & this settlement bankrupted the organization. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lyn…
A jury was able to convict an accused bank robber after they discovered the impression of a holdup note in a notebook the defendant owned. The prosecution had missed it when presenting the notebook as evidence. savannahnow.com/article/2…
In order to legally busk in the Paris Metro, musicians have to successfully audition before a jury and qualify for one of the 250 to 300 licences handed out. telegraph.co.uk/news/worl…
In Texas a jury can give the final sentence for murder instead of a judge. As a result, Texas has "misdemeanor murders" where a convicted murderer gets a light sentence like probation because the defense convinced the jury that the victim deserved it. dallasnews.com/news/inves…
In 1986, 12 members of a Florida jury got stuck in the courthouse elevator for 20 minutes. The jurors were hearing a case against the Otis elevator company. articles.orlandosentinel.…
Today I learned of the Chewbacca Defense, a legal tactic that confuses the jury rather than factually refuting the opponent's case. The term originated in an episode of "South Park" that satirized the closing argument of the O.J Simpson trial, and is now widely used. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Che…
Today I learned of the Kleroterion, a device used by ancient Athenians to randomly select citizens for state councils, offices and court juries during their period of democracy. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kle…
A major tobacco company was sued for allegedly using company vans in the 1960s to make trips to housing projects where free Newport cigarettes were given to children. A jury ruled against the tobacco company, which was ordered to pay over $35 million in damages. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New…
On 1915, Harry J. Haiselden, doctor in the German-American Hospital in Chicago, let several disabled newborns die for eugenical purposes, and was acquitted by juries en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Har…
The ancient greeks used to choose their politicians via a method called "sortition", much like how potential jurors are selected today. And, like jury duty, it was seen as an inconvenience to those selected. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sor…
Porter Rockwell, the wild west lawman, was once accused of the attempted assassination of Missouri governor Lilburn Boggs. The jury were convinced of his innocence in part by his reputation as a deadly gunslinger and his statement that he "never shot at anybody, if I shoot they get shot!" en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Por…
J.R.R. Tolkien was nominated by fellow author CS Lewis for the 1961 Nobel Prize in Literature, but was overlooked because the jury said the quality of his storytelling wasn’t good enough. bbc.com/news/entertainmen…
Ukraine qualified for the 2012 eurovision final despite being 2nd to last place in televoting in their semi-final and being 3rd among the jury vote. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eur…
, in the Scopes Trial regarding the teaching of evolution in schools, the TN supreme court threw out the conviction not because they believed the statute was illegal, but on a technicality because the original judge had determined the fine, and not the jury en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sco…
In the 50's and 60's, a single Florida town known as "nub city" was responsible for 2/3rds of America's dismemberment insurance claims. No one was ever convicted of insurance fraud, because juries had a hard time believing even Floridians would be insane enough to cut off their own hands. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ver…
In 1944 a black teenager named George Stinney was accused of murdering two white girls on flimsy evidence, he was tried without legal representation with an all-white jury, and he was executed by electric chair at the age of 14 en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geo…
A man named Curtis Flowers has been tried six times for the same crime and is currently sat on death row awaiting a US Supreme Court ruling on whether or not there was racial bias in jury selection en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cur…
John Mullowney aka Sean na Sagart, a convicted horse thief, had his death sentence commuted by a grand jury and was appointed as a serial killer of Catholic priests aka Priest Hunter around 1709. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sea…
Oregon now alone in allowing non-unanimous jury convictions oregonlive.com/pacific-no…
A man won the right to a retrial as members of the jury used a Ouija board to contact the victims. independent.co.uk/news/uk…
Athenian citizens were given a small payment to participate in democracy, just like jury duty en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ath…

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