The best in arts & entertainment, news, pop culture, and your mom since 2002.

[Total: 26    Average: 3.4/5]
34 Comments - View/Add
Hits: 12042
Rating: 3.4
Category: Misc
Date: 12/06/12 08:02 PM

34 Responses to Neil deGrasse Tyson Beats The Legal System! [Pic]

  1. Profile photo of fancylad
    fancylad Male 30-39
    18830 posts
    December 6, 2012 at 7:49 pm
    Link: Neil deGrasse Tyson Beats The Legal System! - Is there anything this man can`t do? Let`s just let him run in 2016--someone give him a party.
  2. Profile photo of Gerry1of1
    Gerry1of1 Male 50-59
    36653 posts
    December 6, 2012 at 8:22 pm

    I like jury duty, but no, eyewitness testimony is completely unrealiable. It`s been proven over and over, but it`s good for emotionally swaying a jury when a prosecutor doesn`t have facts.
  3. Profile photo of turdburglar
    turdburglar Male 30-39
    4896 posts
    December 6, 2012 at 8:39 pm

    I`ve never served jury duty. They would hate me. I would need some solid evidence to convict.

    What ever happened to "beyond a shadow of a doubt"? It seems they convict people all the time without solid evidence. Why did they send him and the others home? If the prosecutor doesn`t get a guilty vote they just send them home?
  4. Profile photo of Gerry1of1
    Gerry1of1 Male 50-59
    36653 posts
    December 6, 2012 at 9:00 pm

    @ turd - it`s the jury screening process. Both sides get to eliminate Xnumber of jurors from the pool. Obviously a prosecutor would not want someone who was swayed only with fact.
  5. Profile photo of psychoti
    psychoti Male 18-29
    198 posts
    December 6, 2012 at 9:41 pm
    I had jury duty earlier this year for a murder case. They did not ask us a question along these lines, and that makes me question if the prosecution had any sort of case for the one Tyson got summoned.

    In the case I served as juror on the defendant tried to claim self-defense when he shot an unarmed man to death (7 times, at least one of which while the victim was on the ground prone and he stood over him) but the defense was woefully incompetent. He was convicted of murder in the first degree and plans to appeal. I sincerely hope he gets a new defense attorney because that trial just didn`t seem fair.
  6. Profile photo of Andrew155
    Andrew155 Male 18-29
    2579 posts
    December 6, 2012 at 9:55 pm
    I made 40 dollars last time I did Jury duty.
  7. Profile photo of chalket
    chalket Male 50-59
    2712 posts
    December 6, 2012 at 10:07 pm
    @turdburglar
    The standard has never been "beyond a shadow of a doubt" except sometimes in death penalty cases. The legal standard in all criminal cases is "beyond a reasonable doubt".

    @psychoti
    Shot an unarmed man 7 times? Even after he was down? Incompetent defense or not, sounds like he got what he deserved.
  8. Profile photo of carmium
    carmium Female 50-59
    6381 posts
    December 6, 2012 at 10:47 pm
    When I was chosen, the prosecutor AND defense both told us this guy who knifed his roomie to death in the tub was nuts and shouldn`t got to jail. He was a medical student from Poland, and in the jury room we wondered if he wouldn`t know just how to act nuts, but we did what we were told and rubber-stamped the decision. Why it even came to trial is beyond me.
  9. Profile photo of Gerry1of1
    Gerry1of1 Male 50-59
    36653 posts
    December 6, 2012 at 11:02 pm

    @ carmium - sorry you got a boring trial. My last time on jury was a sex trail! WooHoo! All puns aside, it was a hung jury.
  10. Profile photo of tommy2X4
    tommy2X4 Male 50-59
    3446 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 1:01 am
    I always get out of jury duty by saying that I am a care giver to my aging relative.
  11. Profile photo of SminkyPinky
    SminkyPinky Female 30-39
    233 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 2:06 am
    I`m lucky, I`m not actually allowed to do jury duty. I`m not a fellon, I`m a registered mental.
  12. Profile photo of drawman61
    drawman61 Male 50-59
    7738 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 2:38 am
    @SminkyPinky: I thought that was a given for I-A-B readers
  13. Profile photo of burbclaver
    burbclaver Male 50-59
    878 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 4:35 am
    The US legal system has an insatiable need for jurors meaning that you get called for duty every couple of years. This leads to any intelligent person with an inclination to know all the dodges for getting out of it. I know many people in England who have never been called to duty their whole life, if it happened would consider it an honor to serve.
  14. Profile photo of SmagBoy1
    SmagBoy1 Male 40-49
    4432 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 6:37 am
    turdburglar, it`s not "beyond a shadow of a doubt", it`s "beyond a reasonable doubt". There`s a pretty significant difference there. And while I agree that it`s extremely important that there be good, solid evidence, sometimes there`s not HD video of the crime with copious amounts of DNA strewn about. In those cases, sometimes we have to look at all of the evidence.

    Casey Anthony, for example. It`s not clear that she killed Caylee in the 1st degree (DA`s mistake #1), but, evidence *does* suggest that she was the caregiver at the time of Caylee`s death, even without an HD video or DNA, and that she was interested in killing without being found liable.

    It`s important to realize why humans sit juries rather than computers. If it was just and only about facts and beyond all doubt, with no "reasonable" thrown in, we could populate juries with computers in every case. I`m not about convicting the innocent. At all. But not every case is CSI.
  15. Profile photo of CrakrJak
    CrakrJak Male 40-49
    17514 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 6:47 am
    What is so wrong with `eyewitness testimony`?

    Seriously, If several people saw someone shoot and kill another person and that`s all the evidence the cops have, then why not use it?

  16. Profile photo of Tiredofnicks
    Tiredofnicks Male 30-39
    5097 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 6:49 am
    CrakrJak: Because human memory is NOT reliable, and are easily influenced by later input. If you want I can dig up some papers on it.
  17. Profile photo of Tiredofnicks
    Tiredofnicks Male 30-39
    5097 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 7:02 am
    Gerry1of1: Oh bravo sir. Bravo.
  18. Profile photo of FoolsPrussia
    FoolsPrussia Male 30-39
    3446 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 7:39 am
    Eyewitness testimony worked pretty well in the Salem Witch Trials.
  19. Profile photo of putzco
    putzco Male 30-39
    213 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 8:07 am
    God help me if my fate is to be decided by 12 people who were not smart enough to get out of jury duty.
  20. Profile photo of FoolsPrussia
    FoolsPrussia Male 30-39
    3446 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 8:30 am
    "God help me if my fate is to be decided by 12 people who were not smart enough to get out of jury duty."

    Jury duty is interesting. You should try it.
  21. Profile photo of dm2754
    dm2754 Male 40-49
    3336 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 8:40 am
    >What is so wrong with `eyewitness testimony`?<

    When my ex-wife work at the police education center. She would sign in all the cop before class. The during the class she would walk in an interrupt the teacher and hand him some papers and leave. Five min later the teacher would ask the cops in his class to write out a description of what she looked like. Most of the cops could not even though they seen her twice.
  22. Profile photo of brianlance
    brianlance Male 30-39
    140 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 8:40 am
    @CrakrJak: This is what`s wrong with eyewitness testimony: The Misinformation Effect
  23. Profile photo of GhettoNinja
    GhettoNinja Male 30-39
    886 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 8:58 am
    I had a capias out for me due to a forgotten ticket, was called for jury duty. I served on the jury for a bank robbery case while being wanted myself (stupid ticket that was dropped later).

    Wierd.
  24. Profile photo of Cajun247
    Cajun247 Male 18-29
    10731 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 9:06 am
    Imperical evidence regarding the unreliability of eyewitness testimony can be found at the Innocence Project`s website.
  25. Profile photo of monkerz
    monkerz Male 30-39
    196 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 9:27 am
    Genius! Thanks Neil, I have to answer a jury summons soon. Have served thrice prior, feel I deserve 1 sit out.
  26. Profile photo of Suicism
    Suicism Male 18-29
    3625 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 10:21 am
    I submit Libertarian.
  27. Profile photo of CrakrJak
    CrakrJak Male 40-49
    17514 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 12:04 pm
    brianlance: I understand that a person`s memory isn`t always 100% accurate, but that`s what cross-examination by a lawyer is for, to find out any inconsistencies. Also, not everyone is as oblivious to their surroundings or the people they meet.

    Anecdotally, I identified the kid that stole my bicycle from me when I was 14 and they found it in his friends garage, disassembled.

    So no, eyewitness evidence is not as unreliable as you may think, all the time.
  28. Profile photo of Gerry1of1
    Gerry1of1 Male 50-59
    36653 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 1:56 pm

    Eyewitness` are less reliable than lie detectors, which are not admissable.
    There`s a wealth of studies out there on the topic and they all show the same thing, that a variety of other influences make eyewitnesses incredably inacurate. Here`s one link.
  29. Profile photo of FoolsPrussia
    FoolsPrussia Male 30-39
    3446 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 2:11 pm
    "Anecdotally, I identified the kid that stole my bicycle from me when I was 14 and they found it in his friends garage, disassembled.

    So no, eyewitness evidence is not as unreliable as you may think, all the time."

    That`s pretty much the point, though. You may be a good eyewitness, but the next person might not be. If it falls on the lawyer to prove whether a person`s testimony is accurate, you have to keep in mind that the lawyer`s job is to ask questions that make his/her side appear to be correct, not to necessarily get the complete truth from a witness.
  30. Profile photo of slut_etta
    slut_etta Female 50-59
    3849 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 6:26 pm
    slightly off-topic, but a better way to get out of jury duty is to show up to court in a Star Fleet uniform. google it; it happened in federal court in Little Rock several years ago.
  31. Profile photo of SarahofBorg
    SarahofBorg Female 18-29
    3564 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 7:49 pm
    Convicting some one based only on eyewitness testimony is like believing in a story just because some one wrote it in a book. Repeatable empirical evidence is required for something to be scientific, it should be required for a conviction as well.
  32. Profile photo of lauriloo
    lauriloo Female 40-49
    1803 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 10:38 pm
    "slightly off-topic, but a better way to get out of jury duty is to show up to court in a Star Fleet uniform. google it; it happened in federal court in Little Rock several years ago."

    Actually, that woman served as an alternate on the Whitewater jury in her uniform just fine. Well, until she broke the media gag rule because she couldn`t resist talking to them about Star Trek. I happened to watch a doc film about Trekkies last night and she was a big part of it. Every day she showed up for court there were paparazzi waiting for her to see if she would still wear her uniform. She also wore her uniform to work at Sir Speedy and everyone there had to call her "Commander". Her bosses said she was odd but a good sort of odd that made her care about doing a good job. So that made her a good worker and A-ok with them.
  33. Profile photo of OldOllie
    OldOllie Male 60-69
    15841 posts
    December 7, 2012 at 10:50 pm
    FYI, there are only 2 kinds of evidence: eyewitness testimony and circumstantial evidence. It usually requires a combination of both to establish guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

    BTW, I always get out of jury duty by telling them about the time a cop committed perjury to convict me of a traffic violation. I`ve never been picked.
  34. Profile photo of LordJim
    LordJim Male 60-69
    6933 posts
    December 8, 2012 at 6:29 am
    OldOllie,

    You are right about there being only direct (i.e. eye-witness) or circumstantial evidence. But as circumstantial evidence includes fingerprints, DNA, ballistics and other forensic evidence then circumstantial evidence carries far more weight.

    Conviction on eye-witness evidence alone is notoriously unsafe, but sufficient circumstantial evidence (while not perfect) can establish guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

    You used to hear on TV shows `There are no witnesses, they only have circumstantial evidence.` as though that meant the cops had nothing much. But that could include finding the victim`s body in your freezer, their blood on your clothes and in your hair, your fingerprints around their throat, your skin under their fingernails, a bullet from your gun in their skull, a hand-written list of `How I plan to kill X` in your journal and your ad on Craigslist. All circumstantial, but you`re going down.

Leave a Reply