Not Exactly 12 Angry Men
If you have a taste for grinding clichés and soap opera storylines, then you probably enjoyed Mark Kelley’s debriefing of jurors Jean Kelly and Tina Kadisak on CBC’s The National last evening. Me? I found it all a bit much. Kelley’s peewee hockey coach approach to journalism is a nauseating mix of condescension and hick smarm. You could feel the nation wince with embarrassment when in seeking to establish Kadisak’s Middle American bona fides, he described her as “a Brownie leader, no less.” More’s the point, Kelley’s storyline as laid out in his incessant overwrought narration butchered the facts. The most egregious distortion was his assertion that the jury was deadlocked after seven days of deliberation: that at that point, nine of the 12 jurors believed Black guilty of all 13 charges against him, and that this, in turn, led to the July 10 note to St. Eve stating that they were deadlocked on one or more of the charges. In keeping with his Procrustean method, Kelley referred to this as a “cry for help.” In point of fact, as Jean Kelly confirmed for me in an e-mail last night, at that stage the jury was only “deadlocked” on two charges, both of which Black was subsequently acquitted on.
Beyond that, Kelley managed to elicit from Kadisak that the situation inside the jury room grew so fraught that juror Doris Jones threatened to bring in a gun and shoot her. This morning’s Globe finds Paul Waldie offering contradictory reports from two other jurors: “I don’t remember anything like that,” said foreman Jonathan Keag. “People voiced their opinions, but in a civilized way…” Another juror, Monica Prince, also said she didn’t hear any talk about a gun. “That’s garbage. That’s not true,” she said. Kelley, on the other hand, made no attempt to balance Kadisak’s claim. All in all, the piece smacked of sensationalism and self-promotion. Yet another black eye for our beleaguered national broadcaster.
Disharmony among jurors could help Black appeal: Source [The Globe and Mail]