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April 18, 2014

Homework Help: Fair and Impartial Jury?

Posted by Brian on Saturday, October 28, 2006 at 5:47pm.

Hello,

I have a question on a study guide that I am not sure of the answer to:

In a criminal case, does a defendant has the constitutional right to a fair and impartial jury?

My instinct is to say yes, however, I looked at the 6th ammendement which states:

"In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense."

The ammendment states that criminals have the right to an impartial jury-- but what about a fair one? Is there another ammendment, a provision, or something else in the Constitution I am missing that gives criminal defendants the right to a fair jury?

Thanks so much for your help


No, there is not another one. Under the constitution, one is granted a speedy trial, an impartial jury, and the right not to give evidence against oneself.

However: The Constitution says what court decisions say it says, so many things in law...evidence, procedure, and the substance of the law has constitutional protection even if it does not appear in the Constitution. Many folks have great difficulty accepting this, unless it favors them.



Thanks for the response!

So, while the constitution may not give this specific right, because the constitution includes the decisions of the court, it may have given criminal defendants a right to a fair trial?

Thanks for your time


Right. Fair, impartial, and speedy trial, with many rules of evidence relating to those.


What is an impartial jury?i need to know more about it.

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