Archive for Monday, January 25, 2010

Juror who committed misconduct in Jaeger trial won’t testify in court

A juror dismissed during the trial against Matthew Jaegar will not testify in the case. The defense is seeking a retrial.

January 25, 2010


Matthew Jaeger: Guilty Verdict

More coverage of the trial of a former Kansas University student accused of beating and kidnapping his ex-girlfriend.

A juror who was dismissed for misconduct in the Matthew Jaeger kidnapping and aggravated battery case will not have to testify in court.

“There’s no question (the juror) committed misconduct and no question the court had to act,” Chief Douglas County District Judge Robert Fairchild said Monday. “The law is clear on that.”

Defense attorneys for Jaeger, 24, a former Kansas University student from suburban Chicago convicted of attacking his ex-girlfriend, argue that the dismissal of juror Shaun Edmondson created an unfair trial.

During deliberations in August, an alternate juror replaced Edmondson, who said he had re-enacted a defense theory of the victim falling onto a bed rail. The jury one day later convicted Jaeger of kidnapping, aggravated battery and making a criminal threat.

Jaeger’s defense attorneys argue that the jurors only reported Edmondson’s misconduct after they believed they were deadlocked at 11-1 with Edmondson in dissent.

But prosecutor Jason Hart, an assistant Kansas attorney general, said jurors weren’t “of one mind” even after Edmondson was dismissed because they acquitted Jaeger of the most severe charge, aggravated kidnapping, and could not reach a verdict on an aggravated burglary charge.

Fairchild denied the defense request for Edmondson to testify at a hearing. The judge said the juror who learned that Edmondson conducted the re-enactment agonized overnight whether he should report it until he finally did the next morning.

“The problem is they should have reported it, and they did report it regardless of what their motive is for reporting it,” Fairchild said.

Attorney Pedro Irigonegaray said the defense will still argue that the juror misconduct created an unfair trial at the next motions hearing Feb. 11.

Prosecutors during the trial said Jaeger became jealous when he found another man, Dylan Jones, at the Lawrence apartment of his ex-girlfriend, Francie Biggs, on Oct. 9, 2007. They said he choked her unconscious, injured her vaginal area and then dragged her from the apartment. The defense argued Biggs fell onto a bed rail and injured herself during the commotion.

Jaeger’s sentencing is currently scheduled for March 4. He faces at least four years in prison.

Since the August verdict, he has been in the Douglas County Jail. Jaeger appeared in court Monday in street clothes and leg shackles. Biggs also attended the hearing with family members.


ilovelucy 8 years, 4 months ago

Harassment when he committed misconduct in the first place? HeLLO? He should not have gone against the rules set forth by the judge in the case!

Steve Jacob 8 years, 4 months ago

Should we leave Mr. Edmondson alone when Jaeger gets a new trial?

jmatthews5 8 years, 4 months ago

Well said, spacehog. A mistake while trying to fulfill his public "duty" has made Edmondson as much of a villain as the actual criminal to some of these blogging idiots who seem to know little about the legal process. No crime was committed here, just a mistake which was rectified by the Judge. Being on a jury is a thankless job already, I'm sure Edmondson is regretting not trying to get out of jury duty like everyone else does.

Grundoon Luna 8 years, 4 months ago

The you must be blind, Julio, and a legend only in your own mind.

Boston_Corbett 8 years, 4 months ago

Looks like Matthew has a brand new shock troll as a friend: donjulio4life

Of course, it could just be Arminius too.

GardenMomma 8 years, 4 months ago

I don't understand why it was misconduct. Was he re-enacting the scene during deliberations or at home and discussing the trial with other people than his fellow jurors?

verity 8 years, 4 months ago

GardenMomma, it doesn't matter when or where. Jurors are given very explicit instructions as to what they cannot do and he didn't follow them.

verity 8 years, 4 months ago

He broke the law and it's just possible that Jaeger could walk because of that---or there could be a very expensive retrial.

verity 8 years, 4 months ago

Sorry for the multiple posts, but the law is the law. I get irritated when people think that their opinion overrides the law.

Evan Ridenour 8 years, 4 months ago

Doing an unapproved enactment of the scene is against the rules of evidence GardenMomma. It could be viewed by the other jurors as being actual evidence and they could use it to draw inferences from his reenactment (intentionally or unintentionally) that don't actually reflect the evidence admitted in the trial.

Boston_Corbett 8 years, 4 months ago

"it's just possible that Jaeger could walk"

highly unlikely

jmatthews5 8 years, 4 months ago

Verity-- assuming you were in the jury room and were present for the "explicit" instructions that were given, so please provide us more details on what was said to the jury in this particular instance. I can't possibly imagine that anything was glossed over in the instructions especially in a tight ship like the Douglas County courthouse. Your account is much more plausible. I'm sure that Edmondson heard and understood the "explicit" instructions, then chose to disregard them, and then chose to tell the other jurors during deliberations because he wanted to annoy you and because he felt his opinion overrides the law. Please confirm this scenario....

Also, I know you're not Ben Matlock or Perry Mason, but since you keep saying Edmondson broke the law, can you explain to the rest of us why he isn’t being prosecuted for a crime? Someone with your legal mind needs to help those of us who can’t comprehend.

ivalueamerica 8 years, 4 months ago

it seems lawrence guy thinks following the law is a left wing conspirocy. I guess that makes the right wing anti-American taliban who hates American laws, rules and order.

puddleglum 8 years, 4 months ago

wow. not as entertaining as mizzou getting blown out, but a close second.

weeslicket 8 years, 4 months ago

lead of this article: "A juror who was dismissed for misconduct in the Matthew Jaeger kidnapping and aggravated battery case will not have to testify in court."

??? because why ??? "Fairchild denied the defense request for Edmondson to testify at a hearing. "

??? because why ??? because: "The judge said the juror who learned that Edmondson conducted the re-enactment agonized overnight whether he should report it until he finally did the next morning." ok. but that has nothing to do with edmonson (aka: "The Juror").

other than that; really, really bad writing.

weeslicket 8 years, 4 months ago

still doesn't adress the question.

of either the main question: what legal reason precludes this person's testimony?

or the second qu3stion: why does the ljw have such poor commentary?

(and yes, i did say qu3stion)

Cait McKnelly 8 years, 4 months ago

Understand something; appeals can only be done on the actual, legal mechanics of a case and whether or not there was a "fair trial" from the court. Guilt or innocence has already been established by the jury unless it's determined that the court committed a legal error. The fact that had the juror not committed misconduct the trial might have had a different outcome means nothing. The question in any appeals case is always, "Did the court follow legal procedure?". His defense attorneys are literally grasping at straws. If this is their only basis for appeal they will be shot down. The juror committed misconduct and what he might have done at deliberations and how he might have affected the outcome of the trial doesn't mean squat. Only if a higher court determines that the juror was removed in a questionable way can that be taken into consideration. That's not the case here. The judge followed the correct legal mechanics by removing and replacing him with an alternate. This argument is as wacky as the "bed rail" theory. I'm curious to see what, if anything else, his attorneys come up with for a basis of appeal.

ilovelucy 8 years, 4 months ago

So "Don": since you were obviously there, what did "happended?" It will be interesting to hear your "version."

Cait McKnelly 8 years, 4 months ago

The LPD doesn't "apply" the law. The courts do that. You need to watch a little more Law and Order lol.

Jimo 8 years, 4 months ago

"This has always been a vindictive witch hunt, out to get the rich kid"

But for the "rich" this "kid" would be well into his 2nd year of a 20 year sentence. So much for justice in America.

Showsumrespect 8 years, 4 months ago

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Showsumrespect 8 years, 4 months ago

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ilovelucy 8 years, 4 months ago

Thanks for the clarification. I figured it was someone who was friends with Jaeger. Only a true idiot would say what that person said. They are as sick as the abuser.

Showsumrespect 8 years, 4 months ago

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Showsumrespect 8 years, 4 months ago

She does not have an UN employed little brother. But she does have an older successful brother. What I do know about Chicago "heavy hitters' as you like to fancy yourself as, is that it is just a nicer way of saying you are a total d bags, and think hitting and savagely attacking and beating women is okay, And I have plenty of money for the rest of my life. I just don't have to brag bout it like you do, bc there is much more to me then that. Geeze, sorry dude, but your just making yourself look bad. How can you even defend that creep. And don't act like you know francie and her family because you don't. and by the way smitty is not her brother you idiot. haha. You sound like a meat head tool. haha, just the type of guy that I could see being low enough to be Matt's friend.

Showsumrespect 8 years, 4 months ago

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Showsumrespect 8 years, 4 months ago

Smitty, this don character is he bugging you as much as he is me?!

Showsumrespect 8 years, 4 months ago

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wowzers 8 years, 4 months ago

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vermont 8 years, 4 months ago

Wow! From a psychological perspective "donjulio" needs help. It sounds like he is suffering from Narcissistic/Borderline personality disorder(s) and most likely had more to do with "Matts" crime then he has been letting on. It was more than evident that Evan was not telling the truth during the trial. The LPD NEED to find out more about his kinetic involvement.

Showsumrespect 8 years, 4 months ago

You are write Smitty, I needed to hear that, thank you. Could not agree with you more about Evan!!!! I still don't understand how that POS got off!! I'm outraged by that. They were both gonna finisher off and get rid of her body. That's comforting to know he still walks the streets. I also know Francie and saw what the defense did to her durring the trial, not to mention what Matt did to her, and the last thing she needs is dip stick kip running is trap about things he knows absolutely nothing about. I just care for Francie and I take it personally. It is an amazingly hard thing for a woman to stand agaist her abuser, and she made it clear from the start she would not settle for money and would see this thing through and endure the pain of the trial so no woman has to be matts next victim, at least not for the next4-8 years. To say the least that was noble of her and she deserves nothing but the utmost respect, and support. Most women in her shoes would not have stood their ground, what does that say about our society???? Major props to Miss Biggs, she is my inspiration, and one tough lil lady!!!! Show her some love, I know she needs it right now, and is more than grateful for the support of the community.

Showsumrespect 8 years, 4 months ago

The sentencing date will be on March 7th. Anyone who supports Francie and has been following the case should come and show her support. I know her, and it would help her get through that day a bit easier. She is tough, don't get me wrong, but I know she does feel very alone in this particular issue, and it's not hard to see why, especially when there are people like Pedro, Matt, Evan, Kip out there. Just thought I might mention it if anyone else is interested.

Showsumrespect 8 years, 4 months ago

Lawrenceguy, Do you see how dumb you sound????? I think your head is WWWAAAAAAYYYYY up your b*tt on that last comment. Don't even pretend you are a Lawrence guy either, insulting others as you sit on your high horse as though you are better then the next guy. WE don't need or want the Jeagers dirty money. And It was Francie's injured vajina that made money for the city, she payed the ultimate price nit wit. And where there heck are you, I don;t see any peasants around.

garyr 8 years, 4 months ago

I'd be down for some vigilante justice for Jaegar on this one! Let's get some supporters!!!

bad_dog 8 years, 4 months ago

What is the legal basis for a civil lawsuit against the Jaeger family lawrenceguy? Negligent entrustment of a privileged life? Matt Jaeger himself, sure, but his family?

For what it's worth, people who've been wronged by others often sue for their damages. Why do you have a problem with that-for that matter, why do you even have a dog in this fight? Have you been on the wrong end of a judgment? It has absolutely nothing to do with liberals vs conservatives, nor does seeking justice under the law make it "all about the money". We all exist under the same Constitution and legal system. It's merely a question of whether liability exists and the amount of damages that can be established. If you don't want to be the defendant in a lawsuit, don't engage in an activity that will place you in that position-particularly intentional acts.

Given that the burden of proof is less in a civil trial than for a criminal case, the odds of prevailing are higher. Use the O.J. case as an example-acquitted in the criminal trial yet found liable to the tune of $25 million in the civil trial. Even if you prevail at trial you often still have to find a way to collect on any judgment. It's not easy and can often be extremely frustrating as well as a long-term reminder of the act that lead to the verdict. Tortfeasors often lie about or hide their assets and/or seek protection from bankruptcy courts.

Now if Matt could just write a book-perhaps something entitled "If I Did It"?

somedude20 8 years, 4 months ago

From what I have read/heard about the injuries, no amount of money would make up for what has happened to that poor girl. I would never let anyone mess with my junk for any amount of money. That "lawrenceguy" has been a zealot on this site writting about Yellow House and how every cop is tring to railroad them. I mean, when some a-hole writes this: "You liberals need to understand that someone has to pay for your idle lifestyles and that it is people like the Jaeger and Carroll families. They deserve your gratitude and respect"

You know he is a POS

legionanon 8 years, 4 months ago

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legionanon 8 years, 4 months ago

lol how did i violate user aggrement? with the truth?

Cait McKnelly 8 years, 4 months ago

Wow. This thread has turned into a real dog and pony show. I apologize, Smitty. You took my comment the wrong way. I was actually saying that to lawrenceguy40 (whose comment was above yours). Your comment jumped in the middle between us between the time he posted and I posted. I really think people need to calm down. Jaeger isn't going anywhere. He's been convicted and there's no "technicality" to get him off on. If there was, the court would just turn around and retry him and possibly for worse crimes. If for some odd reason the trial was vacated and the conviction overturned jeopardy wouldn't attach and the prosecutor could (and probably would) announce open season on not just Jaegaer but Evan Carrol as well since he flagrantly violated his own immunity deal. It truly is in his best interest for this trial to stand, as much as it may gall him.

anon1958 8 years, 4 months ago

lawrenceguy40 (Anonymous) says…

This has always been a vindictive witch hunt, out to get the rich kid because he is from a good wealthy family (and not one of our own good wealthy families).

This guy is is not scum, he is delusional scum. The men that brutalized the young woman certainly deserve to be the victims of a vindictive witch hunt but we shall have to settle for a prison sentence for Jaeger.

Grundoon Luna 8 years, 4 months ago

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afraidnot 8 years, 4 months ago

Showsumrespect--your posts are not coming off in the classiest way (and I can only assume they are worse than what appears as most of them have been removed). Not the best way to raise support for your friend.

Boston_Corbett 8 years, 4 months ago

This isn't really totally about getting a new trial. The chances of that are remote. Why shouldn't he try? As a benefit, for a little bit of attorney fees, he has at least extended his time in county jail and delayed and reduced his entry into the state prison system.

While they say there is no such thing as easy time, I'm guessing that the defendant would prefer all the county time he can get.

So don't be surprised if you see other motions.

Boston_Corbett 8 years, 4 months ago

oh, and Lawrenceguy has a history of making hateful comments about law enforcement whenever he can. I suspect a hidden backstory there.

verity 8 years, 4 months ago

Question: If there should be a retrial, can Jaeger be tried for the crimes he was found not guilty of? I thought once you were found not guilty of something, you could not be tried for that particular crime again (double jeopardy). I ask because some people commenting here seem to think that if he is tried again, he might be found guilty of more crimes.

ebyrdstarr 8 years, 4 months ago

Verity, he can't be retried on ag kidnapping because he was acquitted of that. The ag burglary is still out there, though.

lokaytion 8 years, 4 months ago

I would like to understand why juror reenactment (during deliberation) is considered misconduct. The purpose of the defense is to present evidence that, at the least, provides an alternate hypothesis; showing that the prosecutors didn't meet the burden of proof. The goal of the defense is to show there is reasonable doubt and other plausible sequence of events exist. If the jury is deliberating and the only way to communicate to the other jurors what one perceived as the defense's argument is to provide a reenactment, then how is that misconduct? I would view it more as translating and confirming with the other jurors what the defense's argument was. I can understand that there would be misconduct if the juror was providing alternate theories that the defense should've/could've provided during the trial. What actually happened in this situation? Thanks for your feedback/comments/info.

ebyrdstarr 8 years, 4 months ago

I'm way too tired to respond to your main question right now, but I can't let this sentence go: "I can understand that there would be misconduct if the juror was providing alternate theories that the defense should've/could've provided during the trial."

The defense has no obligation to present any theories or evidence or anything. If a juror realizes something that's wrong with the state's case or sees a hole or sees some plausible alternate theory, it would most definitely NOT be misconduct for the juror to consider that in deliberating the case with other jurors. Doing outside research is wrong, of course, but coming up with a theory based on the evidence that was and was not presented is well within the job description of the jury.

The defense doesn't have to provide reasonable doubt; the state has to remove all reasonable doubt.

lokaytion 8 years, 4 months ago

Thanks ebyrd. That makes sense that jurors can discuss and provide alternate theories that would show state didn't meet the burden of proof. That leads back to my main question. Why is reenactment excluded as a form of communication during deliberation?

bad_dog 8 years, 4 months ago

"Why is reenactment excluded as a form of communication during deliberation?"

Because it is very difficult to verify it is in fact, an accurate depiction of what occurred, or in this case, if it even occurred at all. Reenactments as a form of evidence are virtually always challenged and are subjected to strict evidentiary guidelines before they are admissable to ensure they are accurate depictions of the events at issue. A reenactment would be subject to a high level of judicial scrutiny, expert review, cross-examination of witnesses, etc. to determine it's accuracy and reliability before being admitted into evidence for a jury to consider. It certainly wouldn't (and shouldn't) be performed by a juror that has nothing more than the defendant's self-interested testimony to work with.

In this instance for example, the prosecution alleged the defendant intentionally caused the injuries to the victim. The defendant claims she fell on the bed rail. While this defense may raise a question of reasonable doubt, there is no way for a juror to verify the injuries were sustained in this manner, much less exactly "how" they were sustained. Therefore, any "reenacment" by someone who wasn't even there at the time of the occurrence is at best, speculative, and thus, not admissable as evidence. Furthermore, accepting the "she fell on the bed rail" defense as plausible, whether or not reenacted would likely result in an aquittal or hung jury.

Jurors are provided with specific directions as to how they are permitted to conduct their deliberations. This juror chose to materially deviate from those instructions, much to the chagrin of all involved.

jmatthews5 8 years, 4 months ago

bad_dog-- since you were on the jury, can you tell us what those specific directions were? We don't want to hear what the instructions should have been or what you saw the judge read to the jury on "My Cousin Vinny", we want word for word what was said to the jury in this case. After you provide us that information, we can decide if the juror made an honest mistake in trying to determine the guilt of the defendant or if he intentionally chose to "materially deviate" from those instructions. As I hypothesized to another all-knowing blog-brat, I am sure that the juror understood the instructions, intentionally disobeyed those instructions, and then decided to brag about it to the rest of the jury so that he could be the breaking story in the ljw and face the scrutiny of the bad_dog. Just need to get your confirmation of that scenario as well as some reassurance from you that jurors never try to: reenact crimes, talk to their spouses about the trial, read newspaper articles about a trial, watch TV news stories about the trial, or let their own biases and opinions form their conclusion instead of the facts presented to them. Those things would all be against those specific directions you mentioned, right?

bad_dog 8 years, 4 months ago


The instructions provided to jurors don't vary significantly from one court to another. Cousin Vinny aside, I've been summoned for juries on several occasions, testified under oath in Court and argued in front of them. Prospective jurors are provided with pamphlets/handouts and receive verbal instructions from the Judge. I don't really care whether you believe me or not. Go down to the Courthouse and ask for the materials and read them for yourself.

From an earlier article on this case:

"Jurors are given instructions not to do independent investigations, review media reports or visit the crime scene during the trial."

That's not just me talking. Here's a little more flava for ya:

Doan v. Brigano, 237 F.3d 722 (6th Cir. 2001)

"Where murder defendant claimed that bruises could not be seen in dark, juror went home, approximated bruise with lipstick, and reported to rest of jury that because simulated "bruise" could be seen, defendant was lying."

Sound familiar? I'd give you the link but you can't access the case on Westlaw without a subscription.

As for whether jurors ever engage in the types of misconduct you itemized above, sure, it happens. But they are instructed by the Court in an effort to avoid this behavior and the resultant post-conviction appeals on that basis. As to why this juror did it and then told the rest of the jury, who knows? Surely you aren't trying to justify this behavior and subvert the legal system just because it sometimes happens?

I only responded to lokaytions question in an effort to assist his/her understanding and not to be a "blog-brat" as you characterized it. If that irritates you, don't read it.

Hmm, jmatthews5. Interesting username... That's not some spin on the name Matthew Jaeger is it? No wonder you're so interested in the topic of juror misconduct.

jmatthews5 8 years, 4 months ago

Hmmm...bad_dog. Interesting user name. Perhaps you are actually Michael Vick. Wait, you flat out call yourself "bad"...I think we all agree that Jaeger is "bad" you must be Matthew Jaeger!!!! Seriously, Glenn Beck, that was pathetic. First you accuse a juror of something you have no proof of and now you accuse me of being linked to a convicted felon because my user name incorporates a very common last name. Do you drink heavily in between your shifts at legal I have some old posts defending Turner Gill, perhaps it's he and I that are in a conspiracy to defend this juror.

This is my point: you have no idea what went on in the jury room so stop insinuating anything. I personally can see why a juror could make a mistake like this and I see zero reason why he or any other juror would intentionally disobey the instructions and then try to use that in the deliberations. If you think about it, if somebody totally understood that reenacting the scenario given by the defense was forbidden then by definition they would also know that they shouldn't share the fact that they reenacted something with other jurors.

Do me a favor and see if you can locate bad_dog v. common sense in your University of Phoenix law book and let me know what you come up with.

bad_dog 8 years, 4 months ago

Whatever, Bubba... At least I have a clue. You are a condescending twit that can't accept the facts when they smack you right between the eyes.

jmatthews5 8 years, 4 months ago

Ohhhhh....another zinger from the bad_dog. If you have seriously argued a case in a court of law, I sincerely hope that you did a better job than you did arguing with me. Do your closing arguments include references to defendants as "stinky-faces"?

We'll chalk this debate up as a win for me and next time I hope you think twice before accusing somebody of materially deviating from anything without facts to support your claim.

Your lesson in rushing to judgment is now over. You're welcome.

bad_dog 8 years, 4 months ago

Exactly what part of “Jurors are given instructions not to do independent investigations, review media reports or visit the crime scene during the trial.” is so difficult for you to comprehend? Are you unable to grasp the simple essence of that statement? If so, I expect you probably had/have trouble understanding the simplest of instructions from parents, teachers, bosses, etc. Someone that simplistic or willfully obtuse likely would duplicate the very conduct at issue, despite plain and simple instructions to the contrary.

The fact you either cannot or will not accept that which is obvious is more a reflection upon you than your perception of my argumentation skills. I presented you with observations from an unbiased outside source, i.e. the reporter involved in presenting the very issue involved in this story, as well as a case directly on point, yet you persist in illustrating your willful ignorance. I also explained above exactly why juror reenactments are problematic and unacceptable. If that information cannot persuade you, there is nothing more I or anyone else can do or say to convince you. That is your failing and not mine. What the heck do you think the current problem is based upon? Let me spell it out for you: j-u-r-o-r m-i-s-c-o-n-d-c-t. That's why he was dismissed and that is why Pedro is seeking post-conviction relief.

Fortunately however, given you have no idea what you are talking about, you do not have a say in the matter or its ultimate outcome, nor is your opinion anything more than a misguided foray into internet blowhard infamy.

Go ahead and tell yourself you "won the debate". From my perspective a debate requires more than one participant dealing with the facts. You have yet to bring anything with the remotest scintilla of resemblance to a fact. This isn't a Jim Rome "smack-down", although that is about the level of your argumentative "skillz".

Your lesson in the facts and the law is now over. Feel free, however, to continue spewing non-sensical blather on your pilgrimage to internet ignominy.

Post whatever else you want. While I may consider it an ongoing source of amusement, I'm done discussing this topic with you.

jmatthews5 8 years, 4 months ago

There are a lot of big words in there, bad_dog. You must be really, really smart. Unfortunately, you continue to miss the point (probably because you are more worried about trying to impress the ljw online community with your big vocabulary courtesy of

Let me try not to be "obtuse" and make this simple so that you can grasp a "scintilla" of what I'm saying. My point has never been that misconduct did not occur; my issue has been with the conclusions you have drawn without facts. Specifically, you're assertion that "This juror chose to materially deviate from those instructions". My contention would be that somebody cannot choose to deviate from something if there hasn't been a clear explanation of what the standard is. To that point, here are facts for you to consider:

1.) Fact: You have no proof or transcript of the instructions that we given to the jury. You have a reporter's (not a judge's) description and you have an idea of what instructions should have been given.

2.) Fact: You do not know the exact circumstances of the misconduct or the juror himself, so you cannot make a determination about whether the juror "chose" to deviate from the instructions or whether he made a common mistake that many jurors have probably made without consequence.

Comprende, muchacho?

Again, this debate is a victory for me and all who seek online justice against the true internet blowhards (870+ posts for bad_dog).

bad_dog -- Please let me know when you have seen the error of your ways and at that point, I will gladly accept a full and sincere apology from you.

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