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Florida man who overslept for jury duty gets 10 days in jail

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A West Palm Beach man who accidentally overslept and missed jury duty in August was sentenced to 10 days in jail, WPTV reports

Deandre Somerville, 21, was sworn in as a juror on a civil case on Aug. 21 and was supposed to return the next day for the continuation of the trial when he overslept. Instead of heading to court, he decided to go to work.

"At work, I was looking on my phone thinking, ‘What's the worst case scenario that could happen?' I thought maybe I would get a fine or something like that," Somerville told the Sun Sentinel

A few days later, he was served with a subpoena to go before the judge. Later, the judge asked him to explain why he did not show up to court for the trial.

"I said, 'Sir, honestly I overslept and I didn't understand the seriousness of this.' He asked me if I had a criminal record. I said, 'Sir, I've never been arrested,'" Somerville told WPTV.

The judge then sentenced Somerville, who works at afterschool programs for the city of West Palm Beach Parks and Recreation Department, to 10 days in jail and placed him on probation for a year. He served his sentence and now has to complete 150 hours of community service and write a letter of apology. 

"It hurts, but it's a lesson learned. It could have been worse. He could have given me 365 days in jail," Somerville said.

The judge said Somerville's failure to appear delayed the trial by 45 minutes.

"Now I have a record. I almost feel like a criminal now. Now, I have to explain this in every interview," said Somerville, who plans to go to school to become a firefighter.