Thursday, October 29, 2009

Flu Stops Trial?

I'm not saying it's never happened before, but I've never heard of it happening before.
The Salt Lake Tribune - "Fifty-first District Judge Barbara Walther stopped proceedings around 2:45 p.m. and told the courtroom that the juror's child, who is under the age of five, is running a high fever and 'may have swine flu.'

'We are in recess at least until the child is well,' the judge said.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, people infected with the H1N1 flu are contagious from one day before getting sick to five to seven days after -- and the infectious period can be even longer in children. The CDC recommends that those who become sick with the flu stay home for at least 24 hours after the fever breaks.

Walther said court will reconvene Friday at 10 a.m. without the jury that is hearing the case against Jessop, 38, who faces one second-degree count of sexually assaulting a child."
What's happening? Perhaps just the flu but couldn't Judge Walther, who seems to have committed to getting it done it two weeks just plug in an alternate and go on? That is what alternates are for, aren't they? Is one or both of the alternates a juror that doesn't fit the prosecution's plans?

Since I am inclined to believe that Walther does all with a plan, and is very efficient executing those plans, this doesn't fit unless it serves a purpose. The fact that court reconvenes at 10am tomorrow without a jury tells me this is being used perhaps as a break, to discuss something important that has just come up. Juror 12 maybe?

That would fit with not wanting to boot the flu juror since if she is not juror 12, and if juror 12 is an issue, that's both alternates soaked up right away. I have heard of trials going forward with reduced slates of jurors.

It just seems a bit fishy to me, as if something came up, and a juror's kid had the flu and it represented a great time to stop down and talk things over, with the pig flu, for cover. We may never know.

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Jam Inn said...

One of the alternates son is sick.

The Pharisee said...

So, Jam....

Question for you.

What happens if a jury is sequestered? Frankly I haven't heard of many trials stopped "Because my kid is sick."

To me that means there is another consideration that flies conveniently along with a sick kid. It's called "using the terrain."

Or maybe not, but it seems as if something unexpected came across Walther's desk and this works as well as any excuse. I'm sure the kid(s) is/are really sick and hope they recover.

Jam Inn said...

Published reports point to the communicable aspect and if the juror Mom, namely Kim Griffin has to nurse maid her son, she will become exposed. Pecos County due West has confirmed H1N1 Swine flu.

The opening statement by Mark Steven's defense questioning the location of the alleged sexual assault was already tried in Arizona when FLDS member Kelly Fischer, step-father to minor Jenny Steed Fischer was charged with conspiracy and sexual conduct in 2006, one of his plural wives daughters. He was convicted with a light jail time and three year probation. I presume, since Raymond was a 'person of interest' during ongoing investigations that his exact whereabouts in November of 2004 is known or was observed by investigators. My point mainly is that this defense tactic is certainly not a startling or new defense.

The Pharisee said...

I didn't say it was new, I have commented on that possibility on and off for 18 months.

In American jurisprudence, it is up to the prosecution to place him in a locality where the act is a crime. Asking Raymond Jessop to prove he wasn't in Texas is more or less guilty, until proven innocent, also not an aspect of American jurisprudence.

If someone got convicted trying this legitimate tactic before, that has little bearing on the fact that if Eric Nichols cannot place one of the two alleged parents on Texas soil when the child was conceived, he doesn't have a case.

If the jury convicts, they ignore a critical aspect of the elements of a crime.

This is not like murder for instance, it is against the law everywhere. If Raymond bopped fourteen 12 year old girls who normally reside at the FLDS ranch in Mexico, he didn't do anything wrong, unless it can be proved he went to Mexico and arranged for those girls to be there, for that purpose (Mann Act).

What I'm wondering about the juror Jam, is, that if she was sent home to be with the child, and she is exposed, we have a two week delay, if Walther wants to keep this jury intact without dismissing anyone.

Supposedly, she was signaling a speedy trial, something Walther is known for getting when she wants it, because she is willing to run roughshod over precedent to achieve her goals.

Why then is she potentially delaying the trial for two weeks? For this particular juror? Because the alternates are not to her liking? Some other issue?

Jam Inn said...

Your speculating past us even knowing that the boy has N1H1.
Alternates need to hear all the evidence and be prepared to stand in, if needed.
The FLDS jurors being dismissed by request of Mark Stevens was reported by the Eldorado Success. You seemed to have concerns, if religious adherence, was a cause for that dismissal? Speculating now on a suspected two week delay of the trial is premature of events. Trial can resume next week if no swine flu is confirmed.

The Pharisee said...

Yes, I am speculating, and no I don't trust the Eldorado Success. Besides, the quote I saw from the "Success" was qualified.

On top of that we don't know what went on behind the scenes leading up to Stevens "agreeing" to send those jurors home.

Stevens could have said something along the lines of "If your going to do that, I object/take exception" and Walther could have replied "So noted."

I seriously doubt Jam, that Stevens gave up without a fight, even brief and technical, a grounds for appeal.

I'll only believe that, if I see a conviction and an appeal and the appeal cause for Jury Composition is denied based on the fact that Stevens AGREED to that Jury Composition.

Jam Inn said...

The young boy must not of had H1N1, 'Game On' Monday.

The Pharisee said...


Walther wanted the jury outta there for the vetting of the DNA witness. The flu was just an excuse.

Jam Inn said...

Pharisee I don't believe the 'Motion To Suppress' the DNA would be listened to by the empaneled Jury. They was not some irregular act to hear the motion and keep the jury on standby.

The Pharisee said...

Can you imagine Jam, what effect on the jury there would have been if the defense had handed Amy that calculator, in FRONT of them?

Can you imagine what would have happened if she couldn't do the math?

Can you imagine what would have happened if the number was way lower?

The "Flu" was an excuse to cover up the fact that Walther was going to hold a contentious hearing on questionable evidence.

Why, if the number of Raymond's probability of paternity is so high, and such a "lock" did Walther NOT want the jury to hear debate about it?

Why did she conduct a ruse to misdirect onlookers as to the real purpose of the delay?