So you've received a jury summons in the mail. GREAT! This is your chance to serve conscientiously as a fully informed juror. Here's a brief rundown of what you need to know to do your best as a trial or grand juror. 1. Be Fully Informed As a juror, you have the right to vote your conscience, even if it means setting aside the law to conscientiously acquit someone who has technically broken the law. You cannot legally be punished for or required to change your verdict. Though there is no requirement for jurors to deliver a verdict, if jurors cannot agree on a verdict, judges may issue what are known as "Allen" or "dynamite" charges. These are additional instructions to the jury that strongly imply to jurors that they are somehow remiss in their duty if they do not reach a verdict. Jurors should not give up their conscientiously held beliefs under such pressure. If they cannot reach a verdict, the judge will at some point declare Judges and prosecutors may try to conceal this right from you. They may even openly deny that it exists. Appeals courts have ruled that although such denials are false, they also constitute "harmless error" for which the higher court provides no relief to the defendant. This means that there is no penalty for the government when it falsely instructs jurors on the subject, so it is something we expect to continue for the foreseeable future. https://fija.org/library-and-resources/library/called-for-jury-duty.html
Do you recognize this man?
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