How do you know which people are right for your case?
By TONI MESSINA
Jury selection is set to begin this week in the Bill Cosby trial, so what better time to discuss the ins and outs of voir dire? Some states don’t let attorneys do much of anything when picking a jury. Other states, though, open the floor to them, and there’s no better way to figure out who’ll vote for an acquittal than by doing a solid voir dire.
Even if the evidence against your client is overwhelming, you can still win if you pick the right jury. The reverse is also true. Pick a majority of people looking to convict and no matter “what” the facts, they will. That’s how important selecting a jury is.
So how do you know which people are right for your case? Here’s a few things I learned in the course of being lead counsel in 100+ trials.
1) Stereotypes don’t always work.
2) Balance the jury.
3) Being didactic doesn’t tell you much about the jury.
4) Let the people talk.
5) What’s their vibe?
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