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DaKCMan AP
06-26-2006, 11:13 AM
Man says he's on heroin to avoid jury duty

A man made a mockery of the justice system when he tried to get removed from a jury pool in a death penalty case by claiming he is a heroin addict and a killer, a judge said.

Benjamin Ratliffe, 21, of Columbus, was charged with contempt of court and obstruction of justice and ordered to spend a night in jail.

Ratliffe filled out a questionnaire form for potential jurors and professed to having a "bad jonesin' for heroin." When asked if he had ever fired a weapon, he wrote, "Yes. I killed someone with it, of course. Right."

Ratliffe doesn't believe in the death penalty and wanted to be excused from the trial, said his attorney, Scott Weisman.

The potential jurors were being screened for the trial of Quarran S. Covington, who is charged with aggravated murder in the slayings of two Georgia men in May 2005.

In court, witnesses said, Ratliffe shrugged his shoulders when questioned by Covington's attorney and refused to answer any questions seriously.

On Thursday, Ratliffe apologized to Franklin County Common Pleas Judge Julie M. Lynch, who had ordered him to jail the day before.

"He didn't try to defend his responses, and he lied under oath and he was insubordinate," said Lynch, who ultimately removed Ratliffe from the jury pool and dismissed the charges against him. "You do not make a mockery of the process."


http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060626/ap_on_fe_st/unruly_juror;_ylt=Agu_ypyFAtSjBfKB2K5GcJqs0NUE;_ylu=X3oDMTA3b2NibDltBHNlYwM3MTY-

Rain Man
06-26-2006, 11:17 AM
I bet he thought he was clever.

oldandslow
06-26-2006, 11:18 AM
Funny thing is...all he has to do is say he is against Cap punishment and he would be struck anyway.

Otter
06-26-2006, 11:24 AM
Isn't there a little box that you can check somewhere on the return that says something along the lines of "unable to attend"?

I can only guess that would have been the more uncomplicated of the two options.

jidar
06-26-2006, 11:26 AM
Isn't there a little box that you can check somewhere on the return that says something along the lines of "unable to attend"?

I can only guess that would have been the more uncomplicated of the two options.


what? No.. I don't think so.

bogie
06-26-2006, 11:27 AM
probably not the sharpest knife...

Otter
06-26-2006, 11:30 AM
what? No.. I don't think so.

I got out of it when I was in college, across the state and couldn't miss class. There was something on there that gave me an "unable to attend" option.

Don't remember quiet what it was though. :shrug:

greg63
06-26-2006, 11:48 AM
..."You do not make a mockery of the process."


http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060626/ap_on_fe_st/unruly_juror;_ylt=Agu_ypyFAtSjBfKB2K5GcJqs0NUE;_ylu=X3oDMTA3b2NibDltBHNlYwM3MTY-

Lawyers have been doing that for decades.

jAZ
06-26-2006, 11:55 AM
When the judge asks "Do you think your experience with (xyz) will bias you in this case..." all you have to do is say "yes". You'll be gone.