6 Jurors versus 12 Jurors ... who will this benefit?

Discussion in 'Caylee Anthony 2 years old' started by one_hooah_wife, Apr 1, 2009.

  1. one_hooah_wife

    one_hooah_wife Loving Colorado!

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    There will only be 6 jurors seated for this case, as it stands, to this date:

    Florida Statute 913.10 Number of jurors.
    --Twelve persons shall constitute a jury to try all capital cases, and six persons shall constitute a jury to try all other criminal cases.

    http://www.leg.state.fl.us/Statutes/...913/ch0913.htm

    Florida typically seats only 6 jurors in a criminal case ... unless the death penalty is "on the table."

    Who will, if anyone, this benefit?

    Facts:

    The US Supreme Court decision in WILLIAMS v. FLORIDA, 399 U.S. 78 (1970) 399 U.S. 78, decided that a jury of 6 or more did not violate the defendants 6th Amendment right to a fair trial.

    To have a hung jury, only one juror would have to hold out. That is 1:6 odds versus (if the state had opted for the DP) a 1:12 odds, for KC to have a hung jury. It only takes one!!

    Who does this benefit in your opinion?
     
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  3. ks1

    ks1 New Member

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    It appears to me that it will benefit the prosecution by only having to convice 6jurors of guilt, rather than 12. The odds of getting one wacko, KC loving jury member are reduced by half!
     
  4. one_hooah_wife

    one_hooah_wife Loving Colorado!

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    Some could look at it as fewer jurors seated ... fewer jurors to convince ... on either side!
     
  5. dax

    dax Justice for Caylee

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    We've talked about this on other threads when reference was made to "12 people."

    All trials (except dp) in Florida use only 6 jurors so the SA and defense attorney are used to this. In fact, I would say that the majority of SA's and Defense A's here in Florida have never tried a case with 12 jurors.

    On one side you can say that there are less people to convince of guilt and on the other side you can say there are less people to influence someone who has doubt. Personally, I don't think either side benefits one way or the other.
     
  6. frenchvixen

    frenchvixen New Member

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    This really made my day. Instead of having 12, she will have 6.. this may be the reason why the took the DP off the table. The cards are stacked in the favor of the prosecution b/c it's 6 less folks to worry about.
     
  7. marla

    marla Former Member

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    :blowkiss:
     
  8. Friday

    Friday Verified Author

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    I'm amazed there will be only 6 jurrors. I've been here every day since July and never came across this info before. Duh.
     
  9. Manny

    Manny New Member

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    Is this only in Florida?
     
  10. one_hooah_wife

    one_hooah_wife Loving Colorado!

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    Well, I have not looked at other state law ... and I am most familiar with TN and AL law .... so I do not know ... keep in mind this is a state's law matter ... for this case ... I Have referenced FL Law only!
     
  11. Friday

    Friday Verified Author

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    Not to be a kill-joy but if I were the only hold-out against convicting someone, I'd be more willing to yield to the opposing opinion of 11 other people, than I would be willing to yield to the opposing opinion of only 5 others. I'm not implying that I'd been more intimidated if eleven people ganged up on me. Rather, I mean that I'd be more willing to doubt/question my own judgment if 11 people adamantly disagreed with me. If there were only 5 people who saw things the opposite of me, I'd be more inclined to shrug that off, stand firm, and try to bring them around.

    Lately, I notice I'm using a lot more words to try to explain myself, but not doing a better job of it. LOL. So, to reduce all the above to one sentence: I'd be more willing to question my own judgment if 11 other people thought I was dead-wrong, than I'd be if only 5 people thought that.
     
  12. DotsEyes

    DotsEyes Former Member

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    Seems to me that having only 6 jurors benefits the prosecution.
     
  13. Issi

    Issi Former Member

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    Certainly one way to look at it and I don't disagree.

    I think it works from both angles 50/50....


    But...

    What if you had two hold outs on a conviction in a group of 12 that you had to convince... or even three?

    Cutting the jury down to six, imo, cuts down on deliberation time.

    If I were a juror, I would rather deliberate with five other people than a group of twelve. With a smaller group, it's easier to discuss and you have less cross talk... To me, it's simply more focused.
     
  14. natsound

    natsound Active Member

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    I don't know if the 6:1 odds versus 12:1 odds works when talking about the chances of one juror holding out. I've long believed 12 people on a jury is too many, because instead of convincing 6 minds, you have to convince 12. We recently had a very important trial of a public official here. It was a mistrial because of 1 juror out of 12.. and this guy is so obviously guilty. Now taxpayers will have to cough up more cash to do it all over again.
     
  15. Marple

    Marple Active Member

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    I have served on a jury of 12 in an other state and also on a jury of 6 in Florida. The jury of 6 was much easier.
     
  16. trixi491

    trixi491 New Member

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    Altho I agree with Friday's comment, I also feel that lowering the number of jurors makes the jury feel more close. I know I would feel much closer with 5 other people I had come to sit with day after day than I would 11. Then during final deliberation to see those 5 other people felt she was guilty, I might be more keen to hearing them out and reconsidering than I would a larger amount of people I felt less of a connection with. That's JMO.
     
  17. NancyT

    NancyT New Member

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    Since the defense will be looking for a moron, it would seem to me that finding 1 in 6 would be harder than finding 1 in 12. :crazy:
     
  18. Friday

    Friday Verified Author

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    I don't disagree at all. :)
     
  19. panthera

    panthera Retired WS Staff

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    I understand what you're saying, and you bring up a good point. :)
     
  20. panthera

    panthera Retired WS Staff

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    I think it all goes back to who is on the jury and not necessarily the number of jurors. Even with only 6, the state still needs to carefully weed out the potential pro-defense ones during voir dire.
     
  21. BondJamesBond

    BondJamesBond Blunt Instrument

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    Good question.

    For anyone willing to wade through it, the U.S. Bureau of Justice provides a plethora of statistics here. I didn't see anything on a quick review that would help this discussion, but...it was a quick look.

    The best approach I can think of regarding this question would be to ask it in the extremes and see if it makes a difference.

    Would a jury of 1 benefit either?
    Would a jury of 1,000 benefit either?

    I can only give a biased answer, but, IMHO, when there is sufficient evidence to make the case - which I believe we'll see in this one - increasing the jury size has the effect of jury behavior increasingly simulating the behavior of the mass population and finding individuals whose definition of "reasonable" varies widely from the 'norm' and would therefore be willing to hold out for the defense.

    So...with no better argument than that...I'd say 6 benefits the SA more than the defense...if ever so slightly. Since the Supreme Court upheld it, perhaps there were some statistics presented @ the time showing no bias 6 vs. 12...maybe.

    You may also consider the juror selection process. Are there any benefits one way or the other in the selection process SA vs. defense? Selection...regardless of 6 or 12...is make or break.
     

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