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NCJ Number: 186258 Find in a Library
Title: An Inside Look at Jury Decision-Making
Journal: Judicial Officers' Bulletin  Volume:12  Issue:4  Dated:May 2000  Pages:25-32
Author(s): Warren Young; Neil Cameron; Yvette Tinsley
Date Published: May 2000
Page Count: 5
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: Australia
Annotation: This article summarizes some of the findings of a research project on jury decision-making.
Abstract: The research project analyzed a sample of 48 trials. Many jurors who were interviewed expressed considerable ignorance about the role and nature of the jury and legal systems, had difficulty adapting to the process of the trial and their task as jurors, and considered insufficient the information they had received about factual issues and relevant law. Jurors’ deliberations fell into three broad categories: immediate formal or informal poll; brief and fairly cursory discussion of the issues or applicable law, followed rapidly by a poll; and relatively full discussion of the evidence before taking a poll. Jury decision-making was characterized by a very high level of conscientiousness. Even so, in 35 of the 48 trials, there were widespread misunderstandings about aspects of the law that persisted through to, and significantly influenced, jury deliberations. The article discusses the influence, if any, of external material; jury disagreement and uncertainty; and jury verdicts and hung juries. Notes
Main Term(s): Courts
Index Term(s): Australia; Hung juries; Juror post verdict interviews; Jury decisionmaking; Jury instructions; Jury unanimity; Opening statements; Trial procedures; Verdicts
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