There are a lot of moving parts in a criminal case, and you have to adequately address each one of them if you want to maximize your chances of beating the prosecution. Although that means gathering evidence that supports your position and pokes holes in the prosecution’s case, it also means competently navigating the legal technicalities of your case, including jury selection.
The importance of jury selection
The jury in your case is going to determine your guilt or innocence. Therefore, you want to do everything you can to obtain a fair jury.
That said, everyone comes to the table with their own biases and lived experiences. If you don’t draw these biases out during jury selection, though, then you could leave your future in the hands of someone who may already be predisposed to finding you guilty.
Challenging potential jurors
When it comes to jury selection, you’re allowed to strike as many potential jurors as you want so long as you have good cause for doing so. Therefore, you or your attorney will ask potential jurors a number of questions to gauge their biases and their existing knowledge of the case, and if you identify something that would affect their judgment, then you can ask that the potential juror be removed.
You will also have a limited number of peremptory challenges. Here, you can remove a juror without having to show cause. Instead, you can remove the potential juror simply because you don’t feel good about him or her. Keep in mind, though, that you can’t remove a potential juror simply because of his or her race or other protected characteristic.
Competently navigate the legal process in your criminal case
The legal process can be confusing and cumbersome. But it’s also critically important to ensuring that you receive fairness throughout. And it can open opportunities for strong criminal defense arguments.