Nov 12

final-jur-e headline

What’s Happening with Juries Around the World?

The American Bar Foundation and the Cambridge University Press have answers.  Although most countries around the world use professional judges, they also rely on lay citizens, untrained in the law, to decide criminal cases. The participation of lay citizens helps to incorporate community perspectives into legal outcomes and to provide greater legitimacy for the legal system and its verdicts. This book offers a comprehensive and comparative picture of how nations use lay people in legal decision making. It provides an in-depth analysis of the different approaches to citizen participation and considers why some countries' use of lay participation is long-standing, whereas other countries alter or abandon their efforts.

A Peek at the Advocates’ Side of Jury Selection

Some readers may be interested in what trial lawyers are saying and doing regarding jury selection in a post-COVID 19 environment.  The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers is devoting its midyear meeting to that topic.

Ahmaud Arbery Murder Trial Now in Its Second Week –There Is Only One Juror of Color

NBC News reports from Brunswick, Georgia about reactions from a community that is 26% Black.  First Coast ABC News is broadcasting daily live coverage of the trial.

Kyle Rittenhouse Trial Available Through Live Streaming

Fox News 6 Milwaukee provides live video coverage.

Does the Racial Make-up of Juries in Rittenhouse and Arbery Cases Signal Jury Nullification Outcomes?

Investigative journalist Colin C.C. Benjamin opines that jury compositions in these two cases make it likely that predominantly white juries will render verdicts that will go against strong evidence of criminal wrongdoing.

How Do You (Can You) Find an Impartial Jury in the Information Age?

After surveying the ongoing trials in Georgia, Virginia, and Wisconsin that are laden with issues of race and subject to intense media coverage, jury scholar Jeffrey Abramson and former federal prosecutor Dennis Aftergut answer that question by saying in essence, “With great caution by astute judges.”  Their op-ed piece in the Arizona Republic prompts the question, “When white supremacy is on trial, it is not even clear what it means for jurors to be impartial, or whether they should be.”