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"Human drama fills case called landmark on Internet":
The Associated Press has this story on the Lori Drew case. Jury selection will begin in the case tomorrow. (Hat tip: Howard Bashman)
George Weiss (mail) (www):
i take it if jury nullification fails you will help with the appeal?
11.17.2008 10:48pm
xyzzy:
As I mentioned down towards the very bottom of the previous thread, the Citizen Law Media Project has made available a number of the court filings in its United States v Drew page.
11.17.2008 11:17pm
Sean M:
Has the Motion to Dismiss been ruled on yet? Or is Judge Wu reserving his decision on it?
11.17.2008 11:18pm
_quodlibet_:
>>487180

LOL WUT? How does jury nullification come into play here? As long as the jurors don't buy the prosecutor's warped interpretation of the law, she should get acquitted by the jurors simply following the law as it exists.
11.17.2008 11:22pm
highway61:
I had to read the headline about seven times before I understood what it was saying.
11.17.2008 11:47pm
George Weiss (mail) (www):
_quodlibet

well the jurors understanding of the law will be exactly what the judge tells them...not what the prosecutor thinks.

and if the judge agrees with the prosecutor-the only out for the defendant (before appeal) is jury nullification.

of course we don't know yet what the instructions will be-
11.17.2008 11:50pm
OrinKerr:
George,

If the VC TOS forbade asking odd questions, under the government's theory of the case your question would be criminal.
11.17.2008 11:55pm
Oren:
Yes George, let's assume before the jury selection even begins that the evil (or perhaps merely incompetent?) judge will give jury instructions that will inevitably lead to conviction.
11.17.2008 11:57pm
xyzzy:
FWIW, in Linda Deutsch's AP article, linked in Professor Kerr's post above, she reports:
Prosecutors declined to comment on whether Grills has been given immunity in exchange for her testimony.

Reading the Government's Proposed Jury Instructions, no.26 on p.34 provides a clue to question of immunity for Grills.

Somewhat curiously, it appears the index at that document gives the wrong page number for no.26.

Just some random observations...
11.18.2008 12:16am
Cornellian (mail):
I've always wondered about the term "human drama." Could there be a drama with no humans involved?
11.18.2008 1:22am
_quodlibet_:
>>487239
Of course, just ask the Klingons!
11.18.2008 1:49am
George Weiss (mail) (www):
Oren (and Orin).

I completely agree that the prosecutor is wrong in his theory of the law.

My point is that the facts of the case are pretty clear and undisputed. Thus, the only role of the jury is for nullification purposes, becuase a jury will rely on the judge for an explanation of the law.

The real defense of this person is not an alternate theory of what happened (a diffrent series of events than what the prosecutor said happened)-but an alternate theory of what the law means. That battle is not fought before a jury-but before the trial judge and then on appeal.

I haven't actually assumed anything-but I think its likely that a judge who is willing to admit entirely irrelevant and unfairly prejudicial evidence of the suicide probably is not going to give wholly defendant sympathetic jury instructions.

On the other hand i think it is likely that the jury will find the crime as ridiculous as we do and acquit.

I understand Orin is not involved in the trial-but do understand he vehemently disagrees with the prosecutors theory of this case-and wondered if jury nullification failed-whether he wanted to help with the appeal That should explain my question.

where am I going wrong here?

Orin-

I would bet a hypothetical TOS that prohibited "odd" questions would be subject to a factual determination of what "odd" meant...and given my above explanation-i dont think i would be guilty BRD.

In contrast, I think its pretty darn clear the defendant violated the TOS of myspace. The question is a legal one of whether under the circumstances that makes the "access" to the site "unauthorized"

do you think there are factual issues presented in this case? or do you think the entire question is the interpretation of the statute in question?
11.18.2008 1:58am
_quodlibet_:
>>487249

I haven't actually assumed anything-but I think its likely that a judge who is willing to admit entirely irrelevant and unfairly prejudicial evidence of the suicide probably is not going to give wholly defendant sympathetic jury instructions.

My understanding is that the judge only allowed it because he believed that the jury would know about the suicide anyway, it being national news and such, and so that he can remind them that they shouldn't take it into consideration.
11.18.2008 2:39am
George Weiss (mail) (www):
_quodlibert

well if he excluded the evidence all he would need to do would be to remind them otherwise that only the evidence presented at trial was to be considered.

and last i checked the federal rules of evidence do not have a 'everyone knows anyway' provision.

besides--i don't by the argument the judge is trying to prevent unfair prejudice by expressly telling the jury to ignore it. The judge is not simply allowing the mention of the suicide in arguments but allowing "evidence" of it-that is he is allowing the prosecutor to put on evidence proving it happened-which would allow description of the thing in all its gory detail.
11.18.2008 2:56am
Tom952 (mail):
Hannibal Lecter in a skirt.
11.18.2008 8:48am
mischief (mail):

I've always wondered about the term "human drama." Could there be a drama with no humans involved?


Nature documentaries can be pretty dramatic. Or even astronomy -- the formation of a black hole can be pretty dramatic.
11.18.2008 3:33pm
Dilan Esper (mail) (www):
The only "human drama" I remember is "of athletic competition".
11.18.2008 5:48pm
Soronel Haetir (mail):
Dilan Esper,

You've never seen a major cat-fight then? Or does that sort of combat fall under your definition of athletic competition?
11.18.2008 7:02pm