The Pros And Cons Of The Jury System

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The jury system is unique for it being the only form of civic participation in delivering justice in criminal trials. The main idea behind still conducting jury trials in many countries is the public trust that a trial by jury is fairer than being tried by a judge and that juries produce better justice. Juries are ideally made up of community members of all different occupations, age, education level, gender, race, culture and sexuality. This can lead to a decision that encompasses the views and opinions of a broad range of society. Since there are twelve jurors, it becomes difficult to bribe them or corrupt them and is reflective of the shared decision rather than having a one judge make an individual decision which could be clouded by individual…show more content…
This rule is of common law origin and can be visible in the Federal Rules of Evidence, S606(b) following which many similar versions have been adopted in many U.S. states and Canada. This is usually practiced to keep the jurors from being harrowed and for the victims can be reassured anonymity which would be breached if vital minute details of the case while deliberation are disclosed to the public in general.
The non-disclosure on the other hand was questioned in the case of Eric Garner, which was a case in New York where charges were brought about against a police officer for chokehold death of the victim. The attorneys had requested for a complete public accounting of the case to be disclosed. Disclosure was opposed by the district attorney on the grounds that it would have a “chilling effect” on the witnesses, who are promised anonymity and also pressure on the prosecutor would pile up for pressure from public to deliver a certain result if secrecy was no longer sacrosanct. It is the secrecy that shield the grand jury from any kind of accountability with public is simply led in suspicion as to the techniques and prejudices that lead to a deliberation behind closed doors. In another case where Shabbir Ali Mirza was jailed by a majority in U.K. was alleged bias on the pretext that he presented evidence through an interpreter
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There is a concept of “jury of peers” which came by from Great Britain’s Magna Carta, wherein, which guarantees that nobles accused of a crime must be tried by the nobles and commoners by the commoners for a just and fair trial. The US jury works on the principle of a fair balance maintained in the jury for administering objective justice and not a biased decision which was clear in the Simpson’s case wherein due to the racial disparity in the jury the bent was naturally towards acquitting him rather than analysing the case on the basis of the facts of the case.
There is also a misconception that a jury trial must always comprise of twelve people which is not true for in the US it varies from state to state as the fairness of a trial is not dependent on the number of jury members but on the basis of law for if the law is flawed the justice delivered will also be flawed for certain.


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