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NCJ Number: 93189 Find in a Library
Title: After Hovey - A Note on Taking Account of the Automatic Death Penalty Jurors
Journal: Law and Human Behavior  Volume:8  Issue:1/2  Dated:(June 1984)  Pages:115-120
Author(s): J B Kadane
Date Published: 1984
Page Count: 6
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The impact would be negligible if persons who would always vote for the death penalty were excluded from juries in capital cases.
Abstract: The California Supreme Court's decision in the Hovey case identified a separate group of 'automatic death penalty' persons whose exclusion had been overlooked in previous studies of death qualification. This study used data unavailable at the time of the Hovey decision to estimate the effect of excluding this group on the attitudinal skewing and conviction-proneness of death-qualified jurors. The new data came from a 1981 field survey of adult Californians and a 1981 national Harris poll. The Harris poll found that only 1 percent of those surveyed would be fair and impartial in deciding guilt or innocence in a capital case but would always vote to impose the death penalty. Combined results of the two polls showed that 79.3 percent of potential jurors would be fair and impartial and would sometimes vote for death and sometimes not. Thus, taking the automatic death penalty jurors into account has little impact on the findings of other studies. Statistical analyses support the original conclusion that the procedure of death qualification biases the jury pool against the defense. Footnotes, four tables, and a list of five references are included. (Author abstract modified)
Index Term(s): California; Capital punishment; Juror characteristics; Jury decisionmaking; Jury selection; Public Attitudes/Opinion
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