Topic: Jury Deliberations
The state in which you live currently has legislation requiring that all juries consist of 12 individuals and that the verdict be unanimous. In response to recent high-profile case that resulted in a verdict of not guilty, two proposals have been introduced into the legislature to amend how juries will operate. The first is a proposal to eliminate the need for a unanimous verdict so that a majority of 9 of the 12 jurors is all that is needed for a verdict of guilty, or not guilty, in criminal cases. A second proposal has been introduced that would change the number of jurors from 12 to 6 in all criminal cases but would keep the requirement that the verdict be unanimous.
Discuss your reaction to these proposed amendments. What are the pros and cons of each proposal and would these proposals be constitutional?