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Jury Deadlock

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发表于 3-12-2018 15:33:25 | 显示全部楼层 |阅读模式
Benjamin Weiser and Vivian Wang, As Jury Meltdown Subsides, Focus on Ex-Aide's Wife. New York Times, Mar 12, 2018.
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/ ... erations-trial.html

Quote:

(a) "Last Tuesday, the 12 jurors deliberating in the corruption trial of Joseph Percoco, a former senior aide to Gov. Andrew M Cuomo, appeared on the verge of a meltdown. Three jurors each wrote to the judge, asking to be released from jury duty, while a fourth said the panel appeared to be deadlocked.

"In comments outside the jurors' presence, Judge Valerie E Caproni of Federal District Court in Manhattan made it clear that she was skeptical of the jurors' declared dead end.

"She sent them back for further deliberations, reading them a version of an Allen charge, an instruction typically given to juries when they suggest that they have reached an impasse.

"When they finished for the day [Tuesday, Mar 6], Judge Caproni said that the trial would not resume till Thursday, in anticipation of a snowstorm [on Wednesday] that, at least in New York City, was less severe than predicted. [The jury returned two days later -- fresh, re-energized and less confrontational.]

(b) "Under the federal rules of criminal procedure, a judge may allow a jury of 11 persons to return a verdict, even over the objection of a party, if the judge finds 'good cause,' said Stephen Gillers, a legal ethics expert at New York University School of Law.  Good cause may be a juror's illness or refusal to deliberate, but it may not be because a juror is a holdout and disagrees with a majority of the panel, Professor Gillers said."

(c) "One of the jurors in the case was able to escape jury duty last week — just not in the Percoco trial. * * * The juror explained that she had been summoned to another jury, for which she was to have reported that morning. * * * She [that particular juror] had tried unsuccessfully to get a delay, she said. (Neither the court [probably summoned for jury duty by a STATE court] nor the case in which she had been summoned was revealed publicly.)  She remained on the Percoco jury on Friday, still doing her civic duty, apparently excused from the other case with a solid-gold get-out-of-jury-duty card [after the 'get-out-of-jail' pass in Monopoly game]: a letter from Judge Caproni explaining that she was on the Percoco jury."

Note:
(a) This report is chosen to show how jury deliberation is done in American criminal system. Most deliberations are not so dramatic.
(b) Allen Charge
(i) The word charge may be a noun (meaning: jury instruction) or a verb (eg: "the judge or court charged the jury")
(ii) Allen Charge is named after
Allen v United States (1896) 164 US 492.
(iii) Deadlocked Juries and Dynamite: A Critical Look at the 'Allen Charge.'  University of Chicago Law Review, 31: 386-394 (1964).
https://chicagounbound.uchicago.edu/uclrev/vol31/iss2/13/
(Click "Download" and read the first page (386) only)
(iv) The Allen charge originated in a federal criminal trial, but was later extended to a federal civil trial also. (State courts are bound by United States Court's decisions on federal constitution only. And Allen charge is about internal affair of federal courts, so state court are free to go their own ways.)
(v) A unanimous jury verdict is necessary in both criminal and civil trials in federal court. Again state courts differ.

(c)
(i) Regarding quotation (b). Fed Rule Crim Proc 23 (1966 edition)
https://www.law.cornell.edu/rules/frcrmp/rule_23
(ii) Rule 23(b)(3) provides: "Court Order for a Jury of 11. After the jury has retired to deliberate, the court may permit a jury of 11 persons to return a verdict, even without a stipulation by the parties, if the court finds good cause to excuse a juror."   

stipulation
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stipulation
(d) Get Out of Jail Free card
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Get_Out_of_Jail_Free_card
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