What should judges do about supposedly violent jurors? That question came up this week in the ongoing corruption trial of Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens. Yesterday, a federal judge in Washington, D.C., declined to remove a juror after complaints from other jurors that she had “violent outbursts” and refused to “follow the rules and laws” during deliberations.
The jury foreman said he represented the views of 10 others on the panel in requesting that the juror, identified only as No. 9, be removed. He described her as “rude, disrespectful and unreasonable.” Instead of dismissing the woman, U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan summoned the jury into his courtroom for what he called a “pep talk.” At the end of the day, the jurors sent another note saying they were “unanimous” in their desire to end deliberations for the day because they were exhausted. Stevens is charged with lying on financial disclosure forms to hide the receipt of more than $250,000 in gifts and renovations to his home in Girdwood, Alaska. Jurors heard a month of testimony from more than 40 witnesses.