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Old 02-02-2012, 11:32 PM
flatlined flatlined is offline
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Why do jurors have to look at child porn?

One of my friends is doing jury duty. He can't talk about it, but its a big case in a small world. I read the newspaper every day and case is on the front page every day. From what I have read, they are seeing every child porn pic this guy had on his comp. My friend is drinking a lot and we can't talk because he's on the jury.

I do agree that if I ever have to be be tried in court, I'd want all the evidence to be shown. I think that its terrible unfair for my friend to have to look at those pictures and have to take notes so that he can remember which offense is being judged for which pic.

What are your thoughts? Why should my friend have to deal with this?
  #2  
Old 02-02-2012, 11:44 PM
Kilmore Kilmore is offline
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I would say the defendant is being tried for a number of specific crimes relating to the evidence, and the jury has to see all that relate to the trial. What it comes down to is that the prosecutor thinks it is germane to getting a conviction.
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Old 02-02-2012, 11:44 PM
Trinopus Trinopus is offline
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Being on a jury can be rough. Murder trial jurors often have to look at really grisly crime-scene photographs. Rape trial jurors have to hear horrible graphic details of sexual assault. It's a cost of doing business.

Some people are too sensitive to cope with the nasty, graphic, explicit, coarse details of some criminal evidence. They probably should have been excluded during the selection process. Don't the attorneys and judge usually ask questions regarding the prospective jurors' ability to examine unpleasant evidence?
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Old 02-03-2012, 01:40 AM
Eyebrows 0f Doom Eyebrows 0f Doom is offline
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When I was on a grand jury I had several cases where we were shown child pornography, both still images and video. And not just naked images, but graphic sexual stuff. It was one of the most disturbing things I've ever seen. I'm sorry your friend has to see all that.
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Old 02-03-2012, 01:51 AM
Northern Piper Northern Piper is offline
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Originally Posted by flatlined View Post
I do agree that if I ever have to be be tried in court, I'd want all the evidence to be shown.
...

Why should my friend have to deal with this?
Haven't you answered your own question? The jury decides the case. To decide the case, they have to review all of the evidence. The judge cannot do that for them, since it is not the judge who decides the case.
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Old 02-03-2012, 03:31 AM
Senegoid Senegoid is offline
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Quote from the OP (emphasis added):
Quote:
One of my friends is doing jury duty. He can't talk about it, but its a big case in a small world. I read the newspaper every day and case is on the front page every day. From what I have read, they are seeing every child porn pic this guy had on his comp. My friend is drinking a lot and we can't talk because he's on the jury.
Am I really the first in this thread to comment on that? Do you mean, like, serious drinking a lot? And do you mean to imply that your friend has just begun drinking a lot as a result of the unpleasantness of sitting on this case? Or has your friend had a drinking problem all along? Is your friend drinking enough to cause some problems, like being drunk in court, or while driving thereto? If it comes to driving a juror to drink, maybe your friend needs to get herself dismissed from this case, and maybe the judge will do so. Maybe your friend should tell the judge about it. (I think if a juror needs to talk to the judge, you're supposed to send a message via the bailiff or something.)

Last edited by Senegoid; 02-03-2012 at 03:33 AM.
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Old 02-03-2012, 10:57 AM
control-z control-z is offline
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So you have to commit a crime to judge a crime? Bizarre.
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Old 02-03-2012, 11:43 AM
yorick73 yorick73 is offline
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Originally Posted by control-z View Post
So you have to commit a crime to judge a crime? Bizarre.
How else can the jury know that this guy actually had child porn? We can't just take the word of the investigators. Having to sit through every photo or video does seem extreme and I assume it must be related to the charges somehow.
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Old 02-03-2012, 11:50 AM
lieu lieu is offline
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Do or can they at least blur some of the more sensitive parts of the images? I'd think any viewer/juror could determine beyond the shadow of doubt even with slightly doctored pictures that what they constituted was offensive and illegal.

I don't have to break my doctor's arm too for him to understand the severity of my injury.

Last edited by lieu; 02-03-2012 at 11:51 AM.
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Old 02-03-2012, 11:53 AM
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So you have to commit a crime to judge a crime? Bizarre.
Technically, the prosecution has possession and is therefore committing a crime.
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Old 02-03-2012, 11:54 AM
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Do or can they at least blur some of the more sensitive parts of the images? I'd think any viewer/juror could determine beyond the shadow of doubt even with slightly doctored pictures that what they constituted was offensive and illegal.

I don't have to break my doctor's arm too for him to understand the severity of my injury.
That would be tampering with evidence and would most likely result in a mistrail or overturn on appeal.
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Old 02-03-2012, 12:09 PM
control-z control-z is offline
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How else can the jury know that this guy actually had child porn? We can't just take the word of the investigators. Having to sit through every photo or video does seem extreme and I assume it must be related to the charges somehow.
So make detailed descriptions and ask the defendant to admit that this is what was in his possession. If he denies it then what does showing the pictures help? The prosecution could certainly come up with child porn to show and claim was the defendants. The specific images only seem relevant if the defendant is in them.
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Old 02-03-2012, 12:19 PM
robert_columbia robert_columbia is offline
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Originally Posted by flatlined View Post
One of my friends is doing jury duty. He can't talk about it, but its a big case in a small world. I read the newspaper every day and case is on the front page every day. From what I have read, they are seeing every child porn pic this guy had on his comp. My friend is drinking a lot and we can't talk because he's on the jury.

I do agree that if I ever have to be be tried in court, I'd want all the evidence to be shown. I think that its terrible unfair for my friend to have to look at those pictures and have to take notes so that he can remember which offense is being judged for which pic.

What are your thoughts? Why should my friend have to deal with this?
Because if I were ever accused of possessing child porn based on images that I knowingly downloaded, I damn well want the opportunity to help the jury understand that the images were not child porn. They can't do that if they can't or if they refuse to look at them.
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Old 02-03-2012, 12:46 PM
yorick73 yorick73 is offline
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Originally Posted by control-z View Post
So make detailed descriptions and ask the defendant to admit that this is what was in his possession. If he denies it then what does showing the pictures help? The prosecution could certainly come up with child porn to show and claim was the defendants. The specific images only seem relevant if the defendant is in them.
If the defendant admits having the pictures then we don't really need a jury. If the defendant pleads not guilty then you need to at least show that the pictures are indeed child porn (I think a description may lend itself to being argued away by a defense attorney) and that the pictures came off of that guy's computer (i.e. a computer person who can verify this).
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Old 02-03-2012, 12:54 PM
drewtwo99 drewtwo99 is offline
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In drug possession cases, do they force the jury to partake in the goods, so they can be sure what the prosecution has obtained from the defendant is REALLY illegal drugs?

This is ridiculous. A few representative samples, perhaps, is probably enough. I agree that they should be turned to black and white, and the children's faces/genitals should be censored somehow.
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Old 02-03-2012, 01:07 PM
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In drug possession cases, do they force the jury to partake in the goods, so they can be sure what the prosecution has obtained from the defendant is REALLY illegal drugs?

This is ridiculous. A few representative samples, perhaps, is probably enough. I agree that they should be turned to black and white, and the children's faces/genitals should be censored somehow.
No, but they probably test the drug to make sure it's not just baking soda. I don't think a computer can do the same thing in a child porn case. Descriptions are insufficient. I agree, though that a few representative samples should suffice...unless this is related to the charges or the prosecution is really trying to make some point.

I wonder if pixelated/censored pictures would defeat the purpose. Would a censored picture be considered illegal? If not, you may need to prove that the unaltered image was on the computer. I'm only speculating here...
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Old 02-03-2012, 01:10 PM
FlyByNight512 FlyByNight512 is offline
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It doesn't seem like either the prosecution or the defense would benefit from making the jury look through the entire collection, but they all do get to have nightmares afterwards. What prevents the judge, the prosecution and the defense agreeing to show the jury a representative sample of the pictures, with the explanation that there is more but no-one wants to look at it again (except, presumably, the defendant)?
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Old 02-03-2012, 01:15 PM
LurkerInNJ LurkerInNJ is offline
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Why should my friend have to deal with this?
Because he is on the jury and will be voting "guilty" or "not guilty". If he doesn't see the evidence, how would he do that? Take the word of the prosecutor?

If your friend has a drinking problem, he probably shouldn't be on a jury.
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Old 02-03-2012, 01:25 PM
purplehorseshoe purplehorseshoe is offline
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So make detailed descriptions and ask the defendant to admit that this is what was in his possession. If he denies it then what does showing the pictures help? The prosecution could certainly come up with child porn to show and claim was the defendants. The specific images only seem relevant if the defendant is in them.
(bolding mine)

Are you arguing in favor of legal representatives making shit up? Or am I completely mis-reading your post? Also, at your idea to "make detailed descriptions," as if mere words can somehow replace videos with sound or even still images.
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Old 02-03-2012, 01:27 PM
SeamusMcCool SeamusMcCool is offline
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The "logic" if that's what you wanna call it here, that some posters are using is making my brain hurt.

The naivete, the naivete.....
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Old 02-03-2012, 02:43 PM
Northern Piper Northern Piper is offline
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So make detailed descriptions and ask the defendant to admit that this is what was in his possession.
The accused has the right to remain silent. He doesn't have to do anything to help the prosecution establish its case, and he certainly doesn't have to make any admission that the pictures were in his possession.

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If he denies it then what does showing the pictures help? The prosecution could certainly come up with child porn to show and claim was the defendants.
If the only way to prove the case is by an admission from the accused, then there could never be a conviction if the accused exercises his right to remain silent. Where the accused remains silent, the prosecutor has to establish all aspects of the case. The prosecutor can call the police who found the materials who are alleging that the materials were found in the accused's possession, but the only way to establish that the materials fit the definition of child pornography in the criminal statute is to show them to the jurors.

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The specific images only seem relevant if the defendant is in them.
The OP indicates that the charge is possession of child pornography. That does not normally mean that the accused was participating in the acts and is included in the photograph. It is the specific images that need to be looked at, to determine if they meet the statutory definition of child pornography.
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Old 02-03-2012, 02:45 PM
Northern Piper Northern Piper is offline
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So you have to commit a crime to judge a crime? Bizarre.
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Originally Posted by runner pat View Post
Technically, the prosecution has possession and is therefore committing a crime.
When the offence is possession, there is usually a provision in the offence or in the relevant criminal procedure statute which states that when an individual possesses the contraband for a lawful purpose, such as to report it to the police or to prove a crime in court, that person is not committing an offence.
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Old 02-03-2012, 02:54 PM
Northern Piper Northern Piper is offline
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Do or can they at least blur some of the more sensitive parts of the images? I'd think any viewer/juror could determine beyond the shadow of doubt even with slightly doctored pictures that what they constituted was offensive and illegal
If the accused does not agree to the changes to the images, then he can argue that the prosecutor has not proven the case, and is tampering with the evidence. For instance, he could argue that the section that has been pixellated actually showed the genitals covered, so there material didn't infringe the statute, and that the prosecutor is asking the jury to take his word for it, rather than actually show the evidence.

Last edited by Northern Piper; 02-03-2012 at 02:56 PM.
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Old 02-03-2012, 02:59 PM
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When I was on a jury for a possession of cocaine charge, we heard the evidence. A cop said he found a bag of a substance in the accused's car. The prosecutor then help up a bag, and asked if it was the bag. The cop checked the tags and said yes, and that a lab test showed the substance was cocaine. Later in the jury room we had a collection of all the exhibits in the trial, including the little bag filled with cocaine.

The defense didn't try to argue that the substance in the bag wasn't cocaine, they just tried to argue that the defendent had loaned his car to his friend, and the car was in possession of the friend, and it was the friend's cocaine.

I wondered what would have happened if the bailiff came back to take possession of the evidence, and the cocaine was gone. Anyway, we weren't committing a crime by having a bag of cocaine in the jury room, neither was the bailiff who brought us the cocaine, neither was the evidence room clerk who tagged and stored the cocaine, neither was the cop who confiscated the cocaine from the defendent's car.

But note that the reason the defendent never tried to argue that the bag wasn't cocaine, or that there was no cocaine, was because the prosecution could show us the bag of cocaine. Without the cocaine the whole case falls apart. With the cocaine, the cocaine is an unimportant part of the case.

Same thing here. Although I doubt they have to look at every single picture. Unless the prosecution is treating every image as a separate charge. Then to prosecute 157 counts of child porn, they'd have to produce 157 images.
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Old 02-03-2012, 03:04 PM
Northern Piper Northern Piper is offline
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In drug possession cases, do they force the jury to partake in the goods, so they can be sure what the prosecution has obtained from the defendant is REALLY illegal drugs?
There are laboratory tests to determine if a white powder is cocaine or baking soda. The prosecutor then calls the technician who performed the lab test as an expert witness.

There is no lab test for child pornography. The statute defines child pornography, and then a real live human being has to look at the materials and determine if they fit within the statutory definition. Justice Potter Stewart's famous comment about pornography still applies: "I know it when I see it." That is the judgment call that the jurors are required to make, and to do that, they have to see the evidence.

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This is ridiculous. A few representative samples, perhaps, is probably enough. I agree that they should be turned to black and white, and the children's faces/genitals should be censored somehow.
Prosecutor: "The accused is charged with 100 counts of possession. I am only going to give you 5 representative samples, and I'm going to ask you to take my word for it that the other 95 are just as bad. Also, to spare your feelings, I've had my photo lab people alter the pictures to hide the gruesome details. Again, I'm going to ask you to take my word for it that the parts that have been altered and covered up really are child pornography."

The defence objects, arguing that the prosecution is not proving its case and is providing tampered evidence.

You're on the jury. Do you convict?
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Old 02-03-2012, 05:32 PM
drewtwo99 drewtwo99 is offline
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There are laboratory tests to determine if a white powder is cocaine or baking soda. The prosecutor then calls the technician who performed the lab test as an expert witness.

There is no lab test for child pornography. The statute defines child pornography, and then a real live human being has to look at the materials and determine if they fit within the statutory definition. Justice Potter Stewart's famous comment about pornography still applies: "I know it when I see it." That is the judgment call that the jurors are required to make, and to do that, they have to see the evidence.



Prosecutor: "The accused is charged with 100 counts of possession. I am only going to give you 5 representative samples, and I'm going to ask you to take my word for it that the other 95 are just as bad. Also, to spare your feelings, I've had my photo lab people alter the pictures to hide the gruesome details. Again, I'm going to ask you to take my word for it that the parts that have been altered and covered up really are child pornography."

The defence objects, arguing that the prosecution is not proving its case and is providing tampered evidence.

You're on the jury. Do you convict?
It's not that a jury shouldn't have access to all the evidence. If some juror WANTS to sit through and look at each photo, that's creepy, but fine. But I think the problem I have is that the OP states that his friend HAS to view all these photos. Maybe the OP is wrong, and there is no such requirement. But I don't see anything wrong with a juror going "OK, i've seen enough! I'm gonna take the prosecutor and professional witness' word for it that he has 100 pictures of child porn in that stack over there even though I've only seen 5."

It's not so much of a stretch. A juror has to trust a drug analyst or computer analysis when it comes to illegal materials. I'm sure that you could have expert witness testimony from psychologists/psychiatrists who deal with sexually abused children or some other professional who deals with child pornography cases who have been shown the pornography and say "Yes, in my professional capacity I can say that all 100 photographs depict child pornography." I wouldn't feel bad as a juror that was presented with such evidence convicting him without having looked at ALL the photos. And I DEFINITELY would want them censored in some way, personally. But I agree, if a juror WANTS access to all of it, so be it.

Last edited by drewtwo99; 02-03-2012 at 05:34 PM.
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Old 02-03-2012, 06:30 PM
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It's not so much of a stretch. A juror has to trust a drug analyst or computer analysis when it comes to illegal materials. I'm sure that you could have expert witness testimony from psychologists/psychiatrists who deal with sexually abused children or some other professional who deals with child pornography cases who have been shown the pornography and say "Yes, in my professional capacity I can say that all 100 photographs depict child pornography."
The problem is there is, legally speaking, no such expert. In the US, child pornography in not per se illegal. It only only becomes illegal when it is "obscene" and "lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value." Now of course I think we can all agree that all of it or such the vast bulk of it meets these requirements. But both of those judgement calls have to be made by a jury. And basically the jury is the only group who can make that call.
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Old 02-03-2012, 06:40 PM
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One of my friends is doing jury duty. ... My friend is drinking a lot and we can't talk because he's on the jury.
Your friend should speak to the judge: there will likely be a court-appointed counsellor.
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Old 02-03-2012, 06:45 PM
drewtwo99 drewtwo99 is offline
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The problem is there is, legally speaking, no such expert. In the US, child pornography in not per se illegal. It only only becomes illegal when it is "obscene" and "lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value." Now of course I think we can all agree that all of it or such the vast bulk of it meets these requirements. But both of those judgement calls have to be made by a jury. And basically the jury is the only group who can make that call.
Well I'm sorry, but I'd have no problem trusting professional witness testimony from people in the health sector, policy makers, etc on this matter. If some sort of PhD or MD got up on the stand and described in detail what each photograph showed, I'd be fine with that and wouldn't need to see the photos for myself (in the same sense I wouldn't need to test the cocaine myself if it was a drug case).

If the defense had a problem with this, they could offer their own professional witnesses saying that it's NOT obscene for reasons x, y, z, etc. If there was any doubt in my mind at that point, I'd look at the censored pictures myself. If there was STILL any doubt, I'd look at the uncensored pictures.

I doubt that I'd have to go down that far, but saying that a juror should be required to do all that is almost like saying that a juror should have to fire a gun at someone in order to understand what attempted murder is. It's ridiculous to require people who were selected against their choice to look at child pornography. If a juror refused to do so, what would happen to them? Would they face legal penalty? If so, THAT'S really what I have a fundamental problem with. I understand that during jury selection you could say, "I am morally and ethically opposed to EVER looking at something that might be child pornography, so if I am selected for the jury I will refuse to examine any such evidence." What if they decided to keep me on anyway? What would happen in this case?
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Old 02-03-2012, 06:58 PM
JRDelirious JRDelirious is offline
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It's not that a jury shouldn't have access to all the evidence. If some juror WANTS to sit through and look at each photo, that's creepy, but fine. But I think the problem I have is that the OP states that his friend HAS to view all these photos. Maybe the OP is wrong, and there is no such requirement. But I don't see anything wrong with a juror going "OK, i've seen enough! I'm gonna take the prosecutor and professional witness' word for it that he has 100 pictures of child porn in that stack over there even though I've only seen 5."
Well, yes, we all seem to be be presuming it means that the juror has to take a close, detailed look at each image one by one back in the deliberation room; but AFAIK he just has to look at the evidence as it is presented in the courtroom. Once back in the Jury room it's unlikely that if he says "I've seen enough" (and thinks to himself "I'm not even really looking any more, I'm focusing on the exhibit-number on the top right"), anyone will make a Henry Fonda "12 Angry Men" scene.

But the evidence has to be presented in the courtroom and the judgers of fact have to see it. Sparing the sensibilities of a juror is not, should not be of any concern to the Court.

Plus, IMO of course, the more heinous the crime of which someone is accused, the harder it should be to make the case for the prosecution, not the easier.


Quote:
I understand that during jury selection you could say, "I am morally and ethically opposed to EVER looking at something that might be child pornography, so if I am selected for the jury I will refuse to examine any such evidence." What if they decided to keep me on anyway? What would happen in this case?
Good question. Could the court hold someone in contempt over such a claim, or would the judge be mandated to disqualify the potential juror no matter what? Doper lawyers, your take on this?

Last edited by JRDelirious; 02-03-2012 at 07:01 PM.
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Old 02-03-2012, 07:08 PM
drewtwo99 drewtwo99 is offline
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Once back in the Jury room it's unlikely that if he says "I've seen enough" (and thinks to himself "I'm not even really looking any more, I'm focusing on the exhibit-number on the top right"), anyone will make a Henry Fonda "12 Angry Men" scene.
You just inadvertently put an hilarious image in my head, where the premise of the movie was regarding child pornography, and not murder. And Starving Artist is the juror who is trying to convince everyone that it's NOT pornography, that it's just some old guy showering and hugging a naked 10 year old boy, and I'm sitting there going "I DON'T WANT TO LOOK AT THESE 1000 PHOTOS HE TOOK, DAMMIT, I MADE UP MY MIND."

Then slowly, one by one, we admit there is enough doubt that there was no pornography involved, and that it was all artfully done, etc.
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Old 02-03-2012, 07:11 PM
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. . . But I don't see anything wrong with a juror going "OK, i've seen enough! I'm gonna take the prosecutor and professional witness' word for it that he has 100 pictures of child porn in that stack over there even though I've only seen 5." . . .
If I were a juror, and another juror said that, I would switch my vote to acquittal, on the basis that due process has been violated, by juror misfeasance.

(If there were a way to do so, I'd blow the whistle, and try to get a memo to the judge, letting him know that one of the jurors was refusing to deliberate upon the evidence. Is there a whistle-blowing process?)
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Old 02-03-2012, 07:17 PM
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If I were a juror, and another juror said that, I would switch my vote to acquittal, on the basis that due process has been violated, by juror misfeasance.

(If there were a way to do so, I'd blow the whistle, and try to get a memo to the judge, letting him know that one of the jurors was refusing to deliberate upon the evidence. Is there a whistle-blowing process?)
If the juror throws a fit, you must acquit! ^_^
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Old 02-03-2012, 07:28 PM
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Well I'm sorry, but I'd have no problem trusting professional witness testimony from people in the health sector, policy makers, etc on this matter. If some sort of PhD or MD got up on the stand and described in detail what each photograph showed, I'd be fine with that and wouldn't need to see the photos for myself (in the same sense I wouldn't need to test the cocaine myself if it was a drug case).

If the defense had a problem with this, they could offer their own professional witnesses saying that it's NOT obscene for reasons x, y, z, etc. If there was any doubt in my mind at that point, I'd look at the censored pictures myself. If there was STILL any doubt, I'd look at the uncensored pictures.
I don't disagree with you... but the Supreme Court does. Right now as the law currently stands, if the material in question isn't obscene it isn't illegal. The current method of testing for obscenity is the "Miller test." It has three prongs. The first two, both apply "community standards," to decide if the work "appeals to the prurient interest" and is a "patently offensive" depiction in violation of the appropriate law. Both of these have to be decided by a jury, i.e. the members of the community.

The third prong, whether it "lacks serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value," can bring in expert testimony. But even then the final decision on "serious value" still has to be made by the jury. And to make all three decisions the jury has to judge based on the actual work. Not some expert's opinion of the work. If a prosecutor used your recommendation, every conviction would be overturned on appeal, because it wouldn't meet current legal requirements.

As an analogy, in order to decide if I like a movie, I have to see the movie. Other people may have seen the movie. They may know my tastes. They may thus be able to tell me, "you won't like this movie." And they would likely be correct. But the only way to know if I liked the movie would be for me to see the movie. My tastes are eclectic. Maybe even though I generally dislike movies of that type, or with that actor, or whatever, I actually end up liking that movie. Likewise, maybe the expert has a good idea what the jury will think is prurient and patently offensive. And maybe the expert is wrong. The law requires that the jury make that call.

And if you pull this back a bit; take it a lesser extreme. Lets say a guy gets arrested for black and white drawings of cartoon underage girls in their underwear. That is potentially a violation of the Protect act. But a jury needs to decide if those images crossed the line and are obscene. And the guy who has explicit extreme photos gets the same protection. He gets a jury who decides if his images ok or not in accordance with the local community standards.
  #35  
Old 02-03-2012, 07:35 PM
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You just inadvertently put an hilarious image in my head, where the premise of the movie was regarding child pornography, and not murder. And Starving Artist is the juror who is trying to convince everyone that it's NOT pornography, that it's just some old guy showering and hugging a naked 10 year old boy, and I'm sitting there going "I DON'T WANT TO LOOK AT THESE 1000 PHOTOS HE TOOK, DAMMIT, I MADE UP MY MIND."

Then slowly, one by one, we admit there is enough doubt that there was no pornography involved, and that it was all artfully done, etc.
Twelve Men Just Giving Up
  #36  
Old 02-03-2012, 09:05 PM
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Well I'm sorry, but I'd have no problem trusting professional witness testimony from people in the health sector, policy makers, etc on this matter. If some sort of PhD or MD got up on the stand and described in detail what each photograph showed, I'd be fine with that and wouldn't need to see the photos for myself (in the same sense I wouldn't need to test the cocaine myself if it was a drug case).

If the defense had a problem with this, they could offer their own professional witnesses saying that it's NOT obscene for reasons x, y, z, etc. If there was any doubt in my mind at that point, I'd look at the censored pictures myself. If there was STILL any doubt, I'd look at the uncensored pictures.
They can, and do. Not all cases are clear, and it can take a doctor to determine if a picture is of a child or not.
  #37  
Old 02-03-2012, 10:11 PM
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Thank you all for the replies. This is a very informative thread. My friend is usually very temperate, it alarmed me to hear the slur in his voice when we talked. We did NOT talk about the trial, he was very careful to not tell me anything.

Today, he called and told me that they had finished their deliberations, so I can post a link to the newspaper. If not for the pics, this would be a case that I think most dopers would love to debate.

For anyone who wants more background, search for the Yavapai Six.

Now that my friend can read the newspaper again, he looked over all the articles and said that they were pretty accurate. I'm looking forward to hearing the other stuff.
  #38  
Old 02-03-2012, 10:32 PM
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Jeez, why didn't you link to a story that shows the verdict, if the trial is over?
  #39  
Old 02-04-2012, 12:23 AM
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Jeez, why didn't you link to a story that shows the verdict, if the trial is over?
I linked that so that people could see that the jurors had to look at the pics. The verdict was in today, the paper won't be out until tomorrow.

The jury found him guilty on 40 charges. From what I've been told, it wasn't the pics and videos, it was the chat logs that convicted him.

I just checked the paper and because this is big news in our area, there is an update.
  #40  
Old 02-04-2012, 09:20 AM
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"Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, I have some disgusting pictures that were in the possession of the defendant. They are right here in this folder. Just take my word for it. They are really really bad."
  #41  
Old 02-04-2012, 01:40 PM
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Good question. Could the court hold someone in contempt over such a claim, or would the judge be mandated to disqualify the potential juror no matter what? Doper lawyers, your take on this?
I think it's more likely that the judge would either disqualify the juror or declare a mistrial.

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(If there were a way to do so, I'd blow the whistle, and try to get a memo to the judge, letting him know that one of the jurors was refusing to deliberate upon the evidence. Is there a whistle-blowing process?)
I believe there are ways for jurors to send messages to the judge.
  #42  
Old 02-04-2012, 05:34 PM
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Well I'm sorry, but I'd have no problem trusting professional witness testimony from people in the health sector, policy makers, etc on this matter. If some sort of PhD or MD got up on the stand and described in detail what each photograph showed, I'd be fine with that and wouldn't need to see the photos for myself (in the same sense I wouldn't need to test the cocaine myself if it was a drug case).
I was on the jury of a felony child abuse case where a number of expert witnesses described how the third-degree burns on the 14-month-old victim could not have been accidental, they had to have been inflicted by another. There was one juror who discounted anything the "pointy-headed intellectuals" had to say, and would not budge in the face of arguments from the 11 other jurors. After a few days of this we had to settle for a lesser non-felony charge that he would agree with. I expect that prosecutors have had much too much experience with this kind of juror, hence the flow of evidence over testimony.
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Old 02-04-2012, 08:57 PM
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I was on the jury of a felony child abuse case where a number of expert witnesses described how the third-degree burns on the 14-month-old victim could not have been accidental, they had to have been inflicted by another. There was one juror who discounted anything the "pointy-headed intellectuals" had to say, and would not budge in the face of arguments from the 11 other jurors. After a few days of this we had to settle for a lesser non-felony charge that he would agree with. I expect that prosecutors have had much too much experience with this kind of juror, hence the flow of evidence over testimony.
Did he have a pointy head?
  #44  
Old 02-05-2012, 12:28 AM
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Did he have a pointy head?
Well, the three of them looked pretty normal to me, but I guess I wasn't looking at them with an unjaundiced eye, being rather pointy myself.
  #45  
Old 02-05-2012, 12:54 AM
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I was on the jury of a felony child abuse case where a number of expert witnesses described how the third-degree burns on the 14-month-old victim could not have been accidental, they had to have been inflicted by another. There was one juror who discounted anything the "pointy-headed intellectuals" had to say, and would not budge in the face of arguments from the 11 other jurors. After a few days of this we had to settle for a lesser non-felony charge that he would agree with. I expect that prosecutors have had much too much experience with this kind of juror, hence the flow of evidence over testimony.
Simply awful.
  #46  
Old 02-06-2012, 12:17 PM
SciFiSam SciFiSam is offline
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Thank you all for the replies. This is a very informative thread. My friend is usually very temperate, it alarmed me to hear the slur in his voice when we talked. We did NOT talk about the trial, he was very careful to not tell me anything.

Today, he called and told me that they had finished their deliberations, so I can post a link to the newspaper. If not for the pics, this would be a case that I think most dopers would love to debate.

For anyone who wants more background, search for the Yavapai Six.

Now that my friend can read the newspaper again, he looked over all the articles and said that they were pretty accurate. I'm looking forward to hearing the other stuff.
It looks to me like the case is based on the defendant knowing that the girls were under-age. That means the jurors need to see the photos themselves, to see if the girls really do look obviously under-age by widely-accepted standards.

Since the defence seems to be disputing the testimony of an expert witness on the age of the girls in those photos, it's good example of relying on expert witnesses being a pretty bad idea.
  #47  
Old 02-06-2012, 03:53 PM
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Am I the only one here who would be more intrigued than anything else by a case like this?

I mean, as unpleasant as it must be it can't be THAT bad just looking at a photo. At least not compared to stumbling across something so horrible in real life. And in any case, what with child pornography being such a high media priority these days but with most of it being left to the imagination, surely most people would be more curious to know what kind of sick stuff actually goes on.
  #48  
Old 02-06-2012, 07:12 PM
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Some people are more sensitive than other people.

Most people, I would guess, looking at a photo of an adult man having sex with a seven year old girl, would blanch, feel awkward, perhaps queasy. They'd feel sympathy for the victim, disgust for the perpetrator. There might even be a very small element of instinctive sexual arousal, which they would immediately reject.

Most people, I think, would prefer not to look at any more.

But a few people, very sensitive, perhaps emotionally weak, might burst into tears, or vomit, or faint away. People are different; you can never know how someone will react.
  #49  
Old 02-06-2012, 08:20 PM
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Most people, I would guess, looking at a photo of an adult man having sex with a seven year old girl, would blanch, feel awkward, perhaps queasy. They'd feel sympathy for the victim, disgust for the perpetrator. There might even be a very small element of instinctive sexual arousal, which they would immediately reject.

Most people, I think, would prefer not to look at any more.
Most people would look away quickly, too. The problem here is that the OP's friend couldn't look away, he had to *keep looking* at thousands of these images for days on end. That will get to just about anyone.
  #50  
Old 02-06-2012, 08:48 PM
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Am I the only one here who would be more intrigued than anything else by a case like this?

I mean, as unpleasant as it must be it can't be THAT bad just looking at a photo. At least not compared to stumbling across something so horrible in real life. And in any case, what with child pornography being such a high media priority these days but with most of it being left to the imagination, surely most people would be more curious to know what kind of sick stuff actually goes on.
My friend was horrified. My friend is a retired Marine (30 years) who has been in combat. He's seen some pretty bad stuff. He has said that this was really bad.

IMO, it was not being able to talk to anyone about it that was making him drink. He's sober again. He hasn't shared details about what he saw, and he probably won't. He's never shared details about combat either.
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