One thing any good criminal defense attorney understands is that selecting a jury is not only challenging but crucial to the outcome of a case as well. Selecting the right jury generally comes from experience but there are some tactics that can be utilized to help select the best jury for your case.
Get to know the locals
If possible, sit in on a jury selection in the judge’s courtroom to get an idea of how the judge works and of how the local people think.
Ask another lawyer
If you can’t sit in on a jury selection, consult with a local attorney and ask about the judge’s methods.
Use a diagram
Don’t try and keep track of every answer from each juror with just the name on a sheet of paper. Use a diagram with the 12 to 16 seats of the jury box drawn in. Apply Post-It notes to the diagram to record the juror’s name, answers to question and number.
Keep careful track of peremptories left to the defense and how far into the panel the peremptories will last.
Question the jury
If there has been a break in between jury selection and opening statements, ask the court to question jurors on whether or not they have discussed or read about the case during the break. Also, ask jurors if they have been urged by anyone to vote on a certain verdict.
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