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Juror Held In Contempt Of Court After 'Friending' Defendant

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram brings a bit of curious news this morning: A Tarrant County juror was sentenced to two days of community service after he pleaded guilty to four counts of contempt of court.

Jonathan Hudson's wrongdoing? The 22-year-old friended and messaged the defendant on a civil case about a 2008 car wreck. Texas law prohibits jurors from discussing cases on social media sites. The Star-Telegramadds:

Hudson's attorney Steve Gordon said his client feels bad about what happened.

"He seemed to be a very nice kid who just made a silly mistake," Gordon said. "It is a reflection of the times. Most everyone has smartphones now. They can hop on at almost anytime. And there's a lot of down time in jury duty, so what most people do is hop on their phone. But the rules are there for a reason."

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Eyder Peralta
Eyder Peralta is NPR's East Africa correspondent based in Nairobi, Kenya.