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Rules & Instructions
The following instructions are court orders and will be given to jurors during the trial, along with any instructions the judge may also have. They apply until the trial is over and I tell you they no longer apply. Failure to abide by these court orders will result in consequences including but not limited to contempt of court. Punishment for contempt of court will be fines or imprisonment in jail. You can be fined or jailed for violating these court orders.
Instructions to the Jury
- Do not mingle with nor talk to the lawyers, the witnesses, the parties, or any other person who might be connected with or interested in this case, except for casual greetings. They have to follow these same instructions and you will understand it when they do.
- Do not accept from, nor give to, any of those persons any favors however slight, such as rides, food or refreshments.
- Do not discuss anything about this case, or even mention it to anyone whomsoever, or in the presence of others including your spouse, partner, or significant other. Do not allow anyone to mention it in your hearing until you are discharged as jurors or excused from this case. If anyone attempts to discuss the case with you or in front of you report it to the bailiff at once. The bailiff is ordered to inform me of all such reports by jurors.
- Do not post or read about the case or subject matter of the case or persons in the case on blogs, internet news sites, or social media including but not limited to Wikipedia, MySpace, Twitter, or Facebook. You can post that you are on jury duty and how long you expect to be on jury duty. That is ALL you are allowed to write or text about. You cannot post anything about whether a verdict has or will be reached or when a verdict has or will be reached or announced in court.
- Do not read or send text messages in the courtroom. Do not have cell phones, Blackberries, or any other device you may use to communicate with others on while you are in the courtroom. While you are deliberating your cell phones, Blackberries, and any other deice you may use to communicate with others will be removed from the jury room.
- Do not even discuss this case amongst yourselves until after you have heard all of the evidence, the court's charge, and the attorney's arguments, and until I have sent you to the jury room to consider you verdict.
- Do not make personal inspections, observations, investigations, or experiments nor personally view premises, things or articles not produced in court. Do not let anyone else do any of these things for you. All evidence must be presented in open court so that each side may question the witnesses and make proper objection. If you know of, or learn anything about, this case except from the evidence admitted during the course of this trial, you should tell me about it at once. You have just taken an oath that you will render a verdict on the evidence submitted to you under my rulings.
- Do not tell other jurors your own personal experiences or those of other persons, nor relate any information you obtained outside of the courtroom about any aspect of the case. A juror may have knowledge of matters such as business, technical, or professional matters or he may have expert knowledge or opinions, or he may know what happened in this or some other lawsuit. To tell the other jurors any of this information is a violation of these instructions.
- Do not seek information contained in law books, dictionaries, public or private records, the internet, television, newspapers, blogs, social media, or elsewhere which is not admitted in evidence. Do not research anything about this case, the parties, attorneys or any subject matter connected to the case.
- Do not discuss or consider attorney's fees unless evidence about attorney's fees is admitted.
- Do not consider, discuss nor speculate whether or not any party is or is not protected in whole or in part by insurance of any kind.