Jury Nullification Essay

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Jury Nullification For many years the question of whether jury nullification should be allowed has been debated. Some believe that it is a great decision that juries can make to regulate the influence of legislature. For others they think that jury nullification should not be allowed and it gives too much power to the jury to the point where they can ignore laws. There is a small minority of people that think jury nullification should be allowed but have some sort of boundary or rules that could be put in place, such as the jury explaining why they believe the law is unjust. Ultimately, the facts and arguments should be examined on both sides so that a decision can be made on whether to keep jury nullification the same or whether it is in the nation’s best interest to change it by either limiting it in some way or abolishing it completely. Jury nullification defined in the legal dictionary, is the acquitting of a defendant by a jury in disregard of the judge's instructions and contrary to the jury's findings of fact. In simpler terms it is when a jury refuses to convict a defendant because the law is being unfair. It is a very rare situation when a jury nullifies itself. It is said to happen in about three or four percent of criminal cases that go to trial. In the past, jury nullification has been active since the colonial times, when jurors nullified many important trials where they felt that the laws were unjust. Jury nullification was also quite popular in the times of the civil war when juries felt that they did not want to prosecute people for not following the strict laws about African Americans. Up until the mid-19th century no one ever seemed to question the authority of juries. When the courts first started to object to jury nullification, judges tried to make the jurors listen only to their instructions. They also forbid lawyers from arguing about laws

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