Attorney, Author, Mother & wife writing my way to publication. I write mystery, suspense and legal thrillers. My blog has up to date information about the legal & judicial systems for fiction crime writers.
Hung jury : Hopelessly deadlocked
jury in a criminal case, in which neither side is able to prevail.
Usually it means there is no unanimous verdict (although in
Louisiana 10 of 12 jurors can convict or acquit~except in a capital case-first degree murder then the verdict must be unanimous). If the jury is hung
the trial judge will declare a mistrial. A new trial from scratch, with a
new jury panel, is required. The prosecutor can decide not to re-try
the case, particularly if a majority of the jury favored acquittal.
The defendant and defense counsel view a hung jury as a win~at least a temporary one. If the prosecution decides to re-try the case, they have a limited amount of time in which to do so. The defense has the advantage in the next trial of already knowing what the prosecution's case will entail and what the prosecution's witnesses will testify to. The prosecution loses their element of surprise as the theory of their case has been exposed.
Have you ever read in a book or heard a character on television or film say, "We only need one to hang them." or
"We only need one vote and the prosecution needs them all?"
The government needs a unanimous or ten of twelve to convict, but the defense only has to hope they can sway one juror to their side to force a mistrial caused by a hung jury.
I need to share something with you. I have not had much time at all to visit blogs. My husband went in the hospital today for what was to be minor day surgery. The doc wanted to remove a mole on his face just to be on the safe side and rule out skin cancer.
They were biopsying each layer of skin they removed and would then determine if they needed to go further. The doctor could not believe how deep and wide they had to cut into his face. The preliminary biopsy results show malignant carcinoma. The doctor described the mole or growth on his face as the tip of the iceberg they were not expecting to find.
Daryl is in a lot of pain, but in good spirits. We will know the final results in a few days after the pathology report arrives. We will then have some big decisions to make. Please keep Daryl and our family in your prayers.