Jury Nulification Paper

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Abe Haskins Jury Nullification Paper CJA/344 Cultural Diversity in Criminal Justice June 25, 201208 Jury Nullification Jury nullification was first practiced in 1735, and since then, it has become an important element to our criminal justice system. According to Legal-dictionary, “Jury nullification is a jury’s decision to acquit a defendant despite explicitly violating the law because the jury felt that the law was unjust or not applicable to the case.” Whenever there is a jury nullification, unfortunately race and ethnicity are equated in the decision as well as all the other elements that categorize a guilty or not guilty verdict. Racial-based jury notifications have become a problem for our criminal justice system. A jury is used in a trial case to give fair treatment to the defendant whether he or she is guilty or innocent of the alleged crime. Whether the defendant is white, black, red, or green, the color of the defendant’s skin should not be a factor when deciding a case. It goes against our criminal justice system, and it is completely unfair. With that said, questioning whether or not jury nullifications should be used anymore has become a controversial topic. There are equal numbers of both critics and supports for jury nullifications. Although, whenever there is racial-based jury nullifications configured by a jury, eye brows start to raise by both sides, and people start to question the integrity of the jury system. The criminal justice system is designed to incarcerate the guilty, and free the innocent. Racial-based jury nullification contradicts this. The principles of this concept can persuade a juror to decide an outcome based on racial issues. This fact alone destroys centuries of work that was done to make our system strong and fair. Juries should not have right to render a decision based on race; it should be done based on all

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