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Posts tagged "convictions"

More Potential Jurors Want Convictions

I have been noticing a disturbing trend over the past two years.  More potential jurors want convictions.   Some want so badly to return a verdict of guilty that they are willing to ignore the law in order to find the person guilty.  How have I discovered this fact?  During my twenty years of practice, I have developed a number of questions that I ask potential jurors in order to determine if they could be fair and impartial to my client.  One of these questions simply asks the potential juror if he or she would make the State of Ohio prove each and every element of the offense beyond a reasonable doubt before making a finding of guilty.  I go one step further and ask what the juror would do if the State proves all but one element beyond a reasonable doubt, with that one missing element being close but not quite there.  In my first eighteen years of practice, every potential juror answered this question correctly, which was to return a verdict of not guilty.  The first six of those years were spent as an assistant prosecutor, watching other defense attorneys ask various versions of this same question.  The other twelve of those years, I asked that question as the criminal defense attorney. (more…)