Cost of being a good citizen?

   / Cost of being a good citizen? #1  

ultrarunner

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I reported a property crime in progress calling 911.

Apparently the excellent video surveillance system the business has in place resulted in the arrest of the perpetrator(s).

I found this out when subpoenaed to appear as a witness by the District Attourney.

The incident occurred to a neighboring establishment while I was on the job doing my property rounds.

My dilemma is I have now appeared 4 times at the court house 25 miles away and each time after about half a day the motion to continue is granted which means another trip at a later date to the court house.

My employer was at first very enthusiastic as all the local businesses are experiencing a rash of property crime… now not so much as my departure is affecting patient care at the hospital…

For those that know… is there a limit to how many times a witness can be subpoenaed by the prosecution?

I had no contact nor could I identify party(s) involved and can only testify as to the time I heard the glass shatter and seeing someone leaving premises through the shattered glass carrying a sack and speed off in a waiting car…

PS… the owner of the affected business has not made or been asked to appear in court and was surprised when I said I have???
 
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   / Cost of being a good citizen? #2  

jaxs

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I make no secret of the fact I have a low opinion of lawyers in general. They have little consideration for what's decent.moral and common sense,it's all about which can beat the other over the head with points in law. I'm not sure who or how to approach but if appearing is a hardship the judge can allow testimony via satellite if and when it's needed. I'd contact the local victims of crime advocacy group as a start.
 
   / Cost of being a good citizen?
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ultrarunner

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It’s more about a colossal waste of time plus it’s always on the busiest surgery day of the week…

Have not missed a busy surgery day but once in the last 16 years and now 4 times in 6 weeks…

Court does provides proof of my appearance for employer…

Maybe it’s just a strategy of the defense.

I have a better understanding why some are reluctant to become involved…
 
   / Cost of being a good citizen? #4  

scaredychicken

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ultrarunner - I spent a lot of time in Court, as a witness, community corrections supervisor, etc during my Corrections career.

what I am not undestanding is why they would subpoena you as a witness, to appear, for essentially every court date that the offender is required to attend ???
most Court cases have several court dates
I imagine that you are a witness for the Prosecutor (not the Defense)
did you already provide a written witness statement to the police or the prosecutor ?
most witnesses would only be required to attend the trial date(s), IF and when the matter would actually go to trial.

I think that I would discuss your concerns with the Prosecutor directly to determine when (date ?) your witness testimony is actually required. they likely don't require Your appearance for every court date.
- time, and missed work
- driving and gas

I applaud you for being a good citizen. :)
 
   / Cost of being a good citizen? #5  

sd455dan

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Should be able to do a video or phone conference call with the judge and lawyers "on the record"
Still get sworn in and cross examined.

With the continuances, it might save several road trips.
 
   / Cost of being a good citizen?
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ultrarunner

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I’m not sure but it has not gone to trail yet… motions and plea deals back and forth.

First was defense waived right to speedy trail??? In and out rather quick.

Second new evidence introduced so defense asked for time to review which also happened on third visit.

Last visit I was told I should be in and out quick and then told plea was I’m on table and 90 minutes later plea rejected but other cases pending so rescheduled.

Not use to seeing so many well dressed people… mostly lawyers and clerks I guess?

Where I work we all dress about the same in scrubs…

Apparently there are multiple charges from a crime spree and I am only one small piece but the one that resulted in arrest… not many speeding get away cars at 4:30 am!
 
   / Cost of being a good citizen? #7  

scaredychicken

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so it is not even at the trial point yet.

in the 1000s of cases that I've been involved in (many times as a witness), my testimony was only needed when the evidence was produced / or at trial / or at sentencing (where I was typically involved).

I don't understand why they need Your appearance throughout ? Seems sloppy, and a waste of time for everyone.


- of course, I am in Canada. I did however do a practicum for 2 yrs at the local District Court house in Michigan
 
   / Cost of being a good citizen? #8  

jaxs

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Runner said in his original post the delays or due to court granting continuances.
Continuance basically means what it sounds like: an attorney in a court case asks the court to stop a trial or hearing temporarily for it to be continued at a later time. A continuance is not the same as a recess, such as a recess for lunch.
It's above all our pay grades so we aren't going to figure it out to everyone's satisfaction. Have you not heard of lawyers keeping cases out of court until key witness dies or something else happens that allows defendant to go free without being tried? happens all the time.
 
   / Cost of being a good citizen? #9  

Alan W.

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Runner said in his original post the delays or due to court granting continuances.
Continuance basically means what it sounds like: an attorney in a court case asks the court to stop a trial or hearing temporarily for it to be continued at a later time. A continuance is not the same as a recess, such as a recess for lunch.
It's above all our pay grades so we aren't going to figure it out to everyone's satisfaction. Have you not heard of lawyers keeping cases out of court until key witness dies or something else happens that allows defendant to go free without being tried? happens all the time.

So your sayin theres a hit out on ultrarunner.
If he goes into witness protection will he still be able to post on hear.
Just asking.
 
 
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