Competency Addressed in This
Competency? Articulate how lag] CJ DiscusSion Participation Scoring Guide.
the rules of criminal procedure
apply to a criminal justice g M-
practitioner. g Cdmlnal Justice Undergraduate Research Guide.
Introduction 3 G.R.E.A.T Discussion Guidelines.
In our criminal justice system, Q M990-
defendants have the right to a trial
by jury. This right is guaranteed in g
the Bill of Rights, specifically, the 6th
Amendment. While the Constitution
does set forth requirements as to the size of the jury, it does not require that the jury reach a
unanimous verdict. A non-unanimous verdict is a verdict by a jury that is not the result of a
unanimous vote. In Apodaca v. Oregon, the Supreme Court held that a 10-to-2 vote for
conviction is constitutional. In Johnson v. Louisiana, the Supreme Court held that a 9-to-3 vote
for conviction was constitutional. Given the defendant’s right to be proven guilty beyond a
reasonable doubt, the lack of requirement for a unanimous verdict may beg the question as to
whether it is appropriate to allow majority verdicts rather than unanimous verdicts.
For this discussion, consider the fact that the Supreme Court has discarded the argument that
a less-than-unanimous verdict violates the reasonable doubt standard, stating that the term
reasonable doubt refers to the individual juror and not the entire jury.
In your main post:
0 Explore whether all criminal trials should require unanimous verdicts, using a related case as the
basis for your position.
0 Articulate two practical issues that might arise under unanimous verdict requirements.
0 Describe the implications of non-unanimous jury verdicts as a criminal justice professional.
The competency addressed in this discussion is supported by discussion objectives, as follows:
0 Compebency I: Articulate how the rules of criminal procedure apply to a criminal justice
0 Explore whether all criminal trials should be required to have unanimous verdicts.
Articulate potential practical issues that might arise under unanimous verdict requirements
Describe the implications of non-unanimous jury verdicts.