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Q: How does a jury work in a criminal case?

It is a privilege to be an American and we protect that freedom when we:

  • Vote, 2) Serve in the military, 3) Serve on jury duty.

The Sixth Amendment of the Constitution guarantees the right to trial by jury in criminal cases. A jury is a pool of American citizens within the community of the accused. Jurors are randomly selected and assigned. At the first showing jurors are subject to a review process called ‘voir dire’ (to speak the truth). The prosecutor and defense ask the jurors questions to make sure they do not have any personal bias that would affect their verdicts.

Citizens take part in assuring justice is done and that our form of government “by the people” endures.

After both sides have presented their case the jury deliberates and discusses in private the findings of the Court. The Jurors analyze the collective pooling of information and during this process personal opinions come to one common conclusion. The jurors commonly test their interpretations and construction of the evidence.

In Federal cases the verdict must be unanimous.

As seen in the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal’s “Ask a Professional.” 

Ask Amy

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