It is, perhaps, one of the most enduring urban lawyer legends that all you need to do to get out of jury duty is to show up at voir dire, mention you’re a lawyer, watch as both sides race to strike you, and roll on out in time to make it to the office by 10am. While that might often be the case, it isn’t a given, as Nevada attorney Kurt Smith found. He informed the court that doing a three-day stint as a juror would be a hardship on his business, but no one did him a solid and struck him. This made Smith sad and, perhaps, a wee bit reckless.
As the jurors were excused for their first lunch break, Smith passed the tables where the plaintiff and defense attorneys were seated.
“Thanks a lot,” Smith said loud enough for the judge to hear.
Was this a smart thing to say? Did this make the judge happy? No it did not, and he dinged Smith for contempt. He gave Smith the choice of watching the whole trial from the gallery or spending the night in jail. Unsurprisingly, Smith chose the trial-watching option. This should have worked out just fine, but…
[T]he trial was slated to resume at 10:30 a.m. the next day, and Smith arrived in the courtroom 30 minutes late, saying he had been tied up preparing for his own trial.
The judge promptly ordered Smith to the Clark County Detention Center for 48 hours, but he was released after a 24-hour stay, about the same time the trial ended.
You’d think Smith would have learned that further pissing off this judge was a poor life choice, but that does not seem to be the case. At this point, we’re just dying to know if the trial Smith was prepping for was scheduled during that jail stay and whether or not that judge showed him any more mercy.