Verdict is in at Lovejoy: Goldilocks is Guilty

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District Court Judge Paul Scott along with Iowa Legal Aid held a mock trial of Goldilocks at Lovejoy Elementary School, and the student jury found her guilty.

They say that justice delayed is justice denied and Goldilocks might have been inclined to agree. But the alleged intruder finally got her day in court Tuesday afternoon at Lovejoy Elementary thanks to Iowa Legal Aid and Polk County District Court, complete with a jury of her peers, Lovejoy students.

A fugitive since she was last seen running away upon her discovery by the three bears whose privacy she (allegedly) invaded,Goldilocks testified on her own behalf.

Charged with bad manners, she claimed that she was just out picking flowers in the forest on the day in question when the aroma of some delicious porridge led her to the Bear home. She would have knocked but the door was ajar, she said, so she let herself in. Yes, she sampled the soup. It would have been a shame to waste it. Yes, she sat on the chairs but Baby Bear’s was already broken, she said. Yes, she dozed off in one of the beds, but only because she was waiting for the Bears to return so she could thank them for their unwitting hospitality.

Her mother, Curly Locks, testified that she raised Goldilocks to be polite and said most of the time, she is.

The Bears all testified too. Their porridge bowls and Baby Bear’s busted chair were entered into evidence as exhibits.

There really wasn’t much dispute as to the bare facts of the matter aside from whether the door to the house had been left open or not.

The case quickly went to the jury and after the briefest of deliberations 14 of the 20 jurors found Goldilocks guilty.

District Court judge Paul Scott polled them about their thought processes and for sentencing recommendations.

Mason said Goldie was guilty because she didn’t ask permission. Daniel didn’t believe her story. Samantha said she could have waited for the Bears to come home before barging in. Javarr wasn’t buying any of the alibi.

“She said she only wanted to taste the porridge so how come it was all gone?” he said. Judge Scott asked him if he planned to be a prosecutor when he grows up. “No, a doctor,” Javarr replied.

Anna said Goldilocks wasn’t guilty of bad manners, she was guilty of breaking and entering! Prince thought that if the Bears didn’t want their house ransacked they should have made it more secure. Jackson voted for acquittal on the grounds that Goldie only ran because she was scared.

As for the sentencing suggestions, which the judge took under advisement: They ranged from five hours in jail to life in prison; from mandatory manners classes to spanking; from reimbursement for damages to the chair to a fine of $1,000.

Despite some giggling in the jury box during Baby Bear’s tearful testimony about his empty bowl and broken chair, the select panel of jurors paid close attention and took their role seriously. According to Lovejoy’s Community in Schools Coordinator Bobbie Jo Sheridan, the 20 who heard the case were not randomly summoned to do their civic duty as happens in the outside world.

“Interested students filled out applications and we selected these 3-5 graders from that pool of applicants,” she said.

Based on another show of hands before court adjourned it appeared that many of them will one day be filling out applications for law school.

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