Judge won’t take ‘no’ from reluctant juror in murder trial

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Snohomish county court


EVERETT — A Snohomish County judge practically “threw the book” at a man who tried to get out of jury duty in a murder trial.

Saying that he “wasn’t comfortable” serving as a juror, the 18-year old man emailed Judge Michael Downes law clerk the night before the trial, saying that he wouldn’t be available, the Herald of Everett reported. The judge then ordered the man to appear in the courtroom the next day, where he informed the man that he was considering finding the man in contempt and possible jail time — up to 30 days.

The reluctant juror was one of dozens of people summoned as potential jurors in a first-degree murder case linked to a July 2012 fatal shooting at Blue Stilly Park in Arlington, the paper reported.

“This is a first-degree murder trial,” Downes said. “He was empaneled as an adult, as a juror.”

“Once selected to serve on a trial, the Court is counting on each juror to be there every day until a verdict is reached and the Judge releases you,” the county’s jury information website says.

Judge Downes has ordered the man to appear in court Oct. 29.

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1 Comment

  • Patty

    The best way to get out of jury duty on a murder trial is to tell them that you absolutely believe the defense has to prove their client is not guilty ;). Automatic dismissal ;)