A jury is made up of 12 people and is undoubtedly a long drawn out process that requires anyone participating to set aside a day for it. In America, the first step to picking a jury is the random selection process which randomly picks hundreds of people that could possibly be a part of the jury. After this occurs, the jurors are questioned on their morals.
Morals control exactly how any human reacts to any situation. For example, if an individual has close family members that are law enforcement members, then it would not be in the interest of any defense attorney to allow that person to be a part of the jury with a police brutality case. The reason is because this person would most likely be biased toward police officers.
In a high profile case like those six police officers convicted in the murder of young Freddie Gray, picking an unbiased jury is mandatory. This is due to the fact that twelve people have the control of six officers that could have taken a man’s life which led to riots throughout the state of Maryland.
I personally agree with the idea of a jury because it brings a group of people from all walks of life together to decide one’s fate. However, if it wasn’t for those 12, it would be decided by a judge.
A jury’s purpose is not only to eliminate bias but also lower the wrongful conviction rate. The decreasing of this rate will help us proceed as a country. The rate stands at 4.1% of those convicted and given the death penalty as reported by National Geographic.
A wrongful conviction can lead to an exoneration but is a process that does not have an overall time span. So as a result of this, when a man or woman is exonerated, the government can pay between $5,000 to $80,000 for every year he or she sat in jail according to “When Innocent People Go To Prison, States Pay,” published on npr.org.
In my opinion, I believe that a jury is a great thing to have because it puts a balance on opinions and facts. A decision of 12 is always better than a decision made by one man who claims to be fair but in actuality is somewhat biased. So if it was up to me, I would make it mandatory for a jury to always be present.
Categories: Opinion & Review