Jury Almost Fined $3.6M in Download Trial

Woman could have paid $150k for each of 24 songs shared on Kazaa
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 11, 2007 2:34 PM CDT
Jammie Thomas of Brainerd, Minn., left, leaves the federal courthouse with her attorney, Brian Toder of Minneapolis after the jury returned a verdict against her on the third and final day of her civil...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – The jury that last week slapped a Minnesota mom with a $222,000 fine for illegal file-sharing was tempted to do much worse. Jammie Thomas almost faced the maximum $3.6 million, one juror said. “You go too low, it's not going to stop the illegal downloading of music,” she told the AP. “People are going to think, ‘I could do this.’”

The jury quickly determined Thomas’ guilt, the juror said, and during deliberations focused on the penalty—between $750 and $150,000 per each of 24 songs. The jury never discussed the verdict’s effect on Thomas, who makes $36,000 a year. “You can't allow yourself to get involved emotionally,” the juror said.