There Were Twenty Or More Pre Trials Or Trials That Day. The Speed In Which They Were Handled Was Surprisingly

1434 words - 6 pages

On Thursday November 17th, 2005 we attempted to go and see a trial at
the Oakland County Circuit Court. An attorney friend advised us to go
to the Macomb Circuit Court that Thursday, but due to a scheduling
conflict we chose to go the Oakland County Court. We were also
advised to go around 1:00 p.m. because the court would commence again
after lunch. We arrived to the court at 12:45 and after passing
through security we quickly went to the fifth floor courtrooms to find
a trial. Upon reaching the fifth floor we found that on that
particular Thursday there were several pre-trials being held instead
of a single trial. These are the observations that we made in
Courtroom 2B on that day.

The courtroom was very busy that day as we entered. Many well-dressed
attorneys were scrambling about the courtroom talking to their own
clients and other attorneys. We sat in the back of the courtroom in
order to take everything in. Just before 1:00 p.m. the Court Clerk,
Lindsey Hills, asked everyone to rise because Judge Michael Warren was
entering the courtroom. The courtroom was quiet for a moment and then
Judge Warren called the first case. After calling the case the
courtroom again filled with the motion and the whispers of observers,
attorneys, and clients.

The courtroom itself was much different than any other we had
previously seen. The room was quite small for the amount of people
that were there for the trials. Little room was devoted to seating
for observers and families. Over half of the room was space given to
the lawyers, jurors, and the judge to do their business. The jury
section was empty that day until just before 1:30 when two Oakland
County Sheriff’s Deputies escorted nine shackled prisoners in a row
into the courtroom. Each of the nine prisoners, seven male and two
female, had on different colored Oakland County Jail issued uniforms
and they were seated in the jury seats of the courtroom. The
demographics of the incarcerated were five white males, two black
males and two black females. Their age range was from a nineteen
year-old female to a 52-year-old white male. At 1:30 exactly a
pretrial finished and the lawyers in unison approached the jury box to
talk to their respective clients.

There were twenty or more pre-trials or trials that day. The speed in
which they were handled was surprisingly fast at times. One could
tell that everyone involved in the court had went through these
procedures many times before. The chaos as we saw it looked very
routine for the people invested in the cases. The crime du jour
seemed to be violation of probation. Of the cases we saw violation of
probation was the charge in at least half. Other charges that day
included possession of a controlled substance, oddly enough cocaine in
all of these instances, failure to...

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