When selecting jurors for a case, the attorneys for both parties try to select those who will be fair to their clients and to the case. Therefore, there are certain things they look for which will immediately disqualify a potential juror. An individual who fits the profile of a reasonable and unbiased person is more likely to get picked for a jury.
Have no interest in jury nullification. If you are familiar with jury nullification but believe that jurors must act only on the specifics of the case, state this when asked.
Have no relationship with any of the parties in the trial. This will include the plaintiff, defendant, attorneys, witnesses and the presiding judge.
Have no personal knowledge of the specifics of the case. Jurors who have personal knowledge of the case may be biased to vote a certain way.
Have no relationship with the case. For example, you cannot serve as a juror on a case if you happen to be the booking officer.
Be free of bias or prejudice. The lawyers in the case try to eliminate potential jurors who have strong opinions about aspects of the impending trial or persons in the case. For instance, if you think officers in the district are corrupt, and there is an officer involved in the case, you will be excused from jury duty.
Have no experience similar to what the trial is about. Lawyers believe that this would create a bias in the mind of the potential jury. If you can relate to what the trial is about, there is a good chance that you will be disqualified.
Keep an open mind. Defense and prosecuting lawyers try to find jurors who do not have pre-formed ideas about the case.
Have no financial or other personal interest in the case.
- Lying about anything asked of you during the jury selection process, which is done under oath, is considered perjury and is subject to an arrest.
- If you get picked for a jury, you may be given a jury handbook. Read this before the trial to get a better idea of what to expect during the proceedings.
- Jury nullification occurs when a jury disregards the instructions of the judge regarding the law in a particular case and renders a verdict that effectively refuses to recognize that law. This is considered a problem for courts. Persons who state a belief in jury nullification are usually not picked for jury service.