Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Cameron Brown 3rd Trial, Day 29 - Jury Deliberations

Lauren Sarene Key, 4, died November 8, 2000.
Copyright© Sarah Key-Marer, all rights reserved.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015
8:45 AM
I was just informed by the bailiff that the courtroom would be closed to spectators/the general public while deliberations are going on. I've never heard or experienced this before. The bailiff indicated that if there are any updates, they would come out into the hallway and make announcements.

So, I will wait in the hallway.

8:51 AM
Many of the jurors are in the hallway in lively conversations. They are supposed to get further jury instructions this morning. I don't know if I will be allowed in the courtroom for that.

Judge Ohta, Dept. 108, comes out from his courtroom and enters a door to a private room at the end of the hallway.

8:58 AM
More jurors arrive and greet their fellow jurors.

This new development will mean that I won't be able to document when the jurors take breaks.

8:59 AM
DDA Bobby Grace, [I believe part of Major Crimes Division] quickly walks down the hallway and enters Department 108. DDA Grace was one of several prosecutors who put their hat in the ring to run for District Attorney in 2012.

9:03 AM
The bailiff comes out into the hallway and calls jurors 1-12. He tells the alternates to wait outside.

9:05 AM
The bailiff now calls the alternates into the courtroom.

9:11 AM
The four alternates leave the courtroom. They appear a little lost as to what they are to do.

9:15 AM
The hallway is quite empty. There appear to e some jurors in the hall from another courtroom. DDA Hum comes down the hallway with his rolling cart and enters Dept. 107.

9:18 AM
It's actually quite empty on the 9th floor at the moment. There is a man down towards the elevator bay who is flat out lying on a bench. Including me, there are less than 10 people here on this end of the hall and about two people on the other end of the long hallway.

9:32 AM
Attorneys arrive for Department 108. A pretty DDA comes down the hallway pulling a metal card with here files on top.  Now there are more jurors in the hallway.

9:33 AM
Judge Ohta's clerk comes out and calls juror numbers. The jurors appear to be for Dept. 108, that is in trial.

10:00 AM
Judge Fidler's clerk comes to ask who the jurors are for Dept. 106. Many hands go up. There is an accident on the freeway and they've already had call ins of people being late, so she's not going to take roll at this time. She informs them she will take roll in about 15 minutes.

This is my exciting life in the 9th floor hallway.

10:14 AM
About a minute ago, the clerk for Dept. 108 came out and informed their jurors that it would be another 15 minutes. We have a lot of impatient jurors.

10:26 AM
The clerk for Dept. 106 is informing the potential jurors for that courtroom what will happen in the coming days, voir dire, etc.

10:37 AM
Local ABC News filmed the closing arguments. There is a news story along with a short video. I haven't had a chance to watch the video yet. The 9th floor is still pretty busy and filled with jurors.

10:53 AM
The Brown jury exits the courtroom for a morning break. Some immediately use their cell phones, some head towards the men's restroom and others head toward the elevator bay.

11:05 AM 
A few minutes ago, Dept. 106 just released their draw of jurors, and asked them to return at 1:30 PM.
The hallway is now much quieter. There are a few jurors from the Brown trial still on the floor. Most are on their phones.  So essentially, they are still on break.

11:12 AM
The bailiff comes out and asks if the jurors are all here. All are back. They file back into the courtroom.

Now the hallway is really much quieter.

11:52 AM
The jury exits for lunch.

1:03 PM
I had lunch with a friend I bumped into in the cafeteria. Right now, I'm back on the 9th floor hallway. Almost all the benches are filled with jurors, but luckily, I found a seat near an outlet.

A quick glance, I see some of Dept. 107 jurors at the end of the hallway. It's the group that has usually here before anyone else, consisting of male jurors and alternates.

I do not have any inside information on whether or not the jury will reach a verdict today. I wouldn't even hazard a guess. I never try to predict anything having to do with a jury because juries will surprise you.

1:33 PM
The Cameron Brown jury was waiting right outside the door. The jury is let into the courtroom.

1:52 PM
I've had connection problems for the past 40 minutes. First, the court's free wifi stopped working for me in the morning and I switched to using my phone. Then I could not get wifi on my phone down at the left wing at all. I had to move to the center of the hallway near the elevators where there is no power outlet.

2:26 PM
Nothing's going on in the hallway. There are jurors on break from Dept. 108, but that's it. The Brown jury may go on break sometime within the next half hour.

I apologize. At 1:33 PM, the Cameron Brown JURY was waiting outside the courtroom, not Brown.

2:37 PM
Dept. 108 jurors are called back into the courtroom. I'm now the only person in the hallway. It's eerily quiet. It's me in the hallway and the sheriff's at the security station in the elevator bay.

2:56 PM
I am still having some connectivity problems with the Internet. It's very slow and comes and goes.

Editing yesterday's entry, I've gotten all the way through the defense closing. All that's left is the prosecution's final closing. To give myself a break on editing yesterday's entry, I'm reading London Review of Books, that published Seymour Hersh's article, The Killing of Osama bin Laden.

3:06 PM 
One of Dept. 107's alternates is on the 9th floor, at the end of the hallway. When no one comes out of Dept. 107 around 3:00 pm, he heads back to the elevator bay.

3:20 PM
It doesn't appear like the jury is taking an afternoon break. Two of the alternates show up and walk toward Dept. 107.

 3:41 PM
Nothing to report on the 9th floor.

3:45 PM
The Brown jury exits. They tell the alternates they can go home as they pass.

That's it for today. Tomorrow at 9:00 AM.

5:16 PM
T&T readers:
I'm helping Mr. Sprocket with a project at one of his client's buildings. In-between helping him, I will try to compute an estimate of how long the jury deliberated today and start a log.

DELIBERATIONS - Approximate times
9:03 AM - 10:53 AM = 1HR 50MIN
11:12 AM - 11:52 AM = 40MIN
1:33 PM - 3:45 PM = 2HRS 13MIN
TOTAL for Day 1 = 4 HRS 43MIN


GinaM said...

So the deliberations begin this morning?

Sprocket said...


Yes. As I stated, the 12 jurors were called into the courtroom at 9:03 am. They began deliberations shortly after that.

GinaM said...

What I meant to say, was that I read that Sarah was planning on adopting Lauren out to a man named Greg. Who is Greg and was this true?

Sprocket said...

Hi Gina,
Greg is Sarah's current husband.

I believe I'm correct in that Sarah offered this option to Brown. That her husband Greg would adopt Lauren, relieving Brown of the financial obligation. I believe Sarah testified that she would still give Brown visitation with Lauren.

BusyWife said...

Will you remind us how long the other two juries took to deliberate before they settled on a hung jury?

Sprocket said...

I do not know anything about jury deliberations in the first trial. That trial was held at [I believe] the Torrance Courthouse, and I did not attend it.

I don't believe I kept track of jury deliberations in the second trial. I would have to go back and look at my notes.

From my memory, I stopped taking detailed notes after I got sick at the beginning of the defense case. I know I wrote about the closing arguments.

Sprocket said...

On September 10, 2009, during the second trial, I reported that individuals in the gallery informed me that the first trial jury deliberated 10 days.

I do not know if that is accurate or not. I do not know if those were full days, or if some of those days were partial days.

My posts on the 2nd trial indicate that a juror was replaced on 9/24/2009 and that the jury hung on October 5, 2009. I would have to read back through my posts to see how many of those days were court days.

Gregg the Obscure said...

Is it common there for juries to deliberate in the courtroom? Any idea why they're doing so in this case?

Sprocket said...

Greg the Obscure:
The jury is not deliberating inside the courtroom. They are deliberating inside the jury room.

I do not know why the court has barred public and media from waiting in the gallery for a verdict. I've never encountered this before.