PONTIAC, Mich. - A Michigan mother said she was ordered to jail for bringing her two young children with her to jury duty because she could not find someone to watch them.
Carmela Khury, 37, said she had no other choice but to bring her 3-year-old daughter and 8-month-old son to an Oakland County circuit court last Thursday.
Khury said her husband was at work, the children?s grandmother was getting oral surgery and none of her friends were available.
Khury said she called the court?s clerk office to make them aware of her situation and to say that she would be late.
Khury said when she arrived, Judge Leo Bowman dismissed her from the jury pool but ordered her to return Friday and watch the trial as a spectator, and told her she would have to serve 24 hours in jail at the end of the case.
?I was saying, ?What choice did I have? What did you want me to do??? Khury said. "It's not like I didn't show up for jury duty. I showed up for jury duty Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. I had a problem on Thursday."
Khury said the children?s grandmother was able to watch them Friday for her.
The complaint ultimately reached the state court administrative offices, which advised Bowman to immediately cease holding Khury as a spectator.
She was released Monday.
?These are my kids. I know they may not have been important to him but this is my priority,? Khury said.
Staff for Bowman said he would be able to make a comment after the trial ended, but added that making a statement about a specific juror would be inappropriate.
Copyright 2003 by ClickOnDetroit.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.