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Bored juror's Facebook posts lead to mistrial in case

By Ben Hooper
Bored juror's Facebook posts lead to mistrial in case
A juror was fined $1,000 and her case was declared a mistrial after she posted details and complaints about her "boredom" on Facebook. Photo by sergign/Shutterstock.

NEW YORK, Nov. 6 (UPI) -- A New York juror was fined $1,000 and her case was declared a mistrial after she posted details and complaints about her "boredom" on Facebook.

Kimberly Ellis was found in contempt of court and slapped with a $1,000 fine after a Facebook friend tipped off prosecutors and Queens Supreme Court Justice Ira Margulis to her social media posts about the case and jury deliberations.

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"Everything about this process is inefficient," she wrote in a Sept. 17 Facebook post. "I'm trying to remain positive and centered but, truthfully, I'm dying from boredom."

Ellis later shared her frustration with jury deliberations.

"God help me," she wrote. "The other jurors don't trust the police and want to outright dismiss the confessions as well as the majority of the rest of the evidence. Tomorrow is going to be a very difficult day."

Ellis said she now recognizes the error of her actions.

"I continued my personal life as if I was not there to judge a trial," she told The New York Daily News. "It was my first time as a juror, and I was naive."

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The defendant in the case, Sandess Pierre, 42 was charged with a felony count of first-degree robbery in connection with a 2014 incident.

Margulis said Ellis' actions wasted "thousands of dollars."

"We had an interpreter in that case," he said. "We have the court reporter, we have the clerk, and everybody else associated with the case and including the district attorney's time and effort and defense counsel."

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