If you lose your criminal case, you may be able to file an appeal if your trial was unfair, the judge presiding over your case made factual or legal errors, or jury misconduct. Here’s what you should know about the latter and how to get help appealing a guilty verdict.
Juror Misconduct Defined
Juror misconduct can take many forms. It can be the fault of a single juror or multiple jurors. When a jury member lies or disobeys directions, it can have a detrimental impact on the outcome of a defendant’s case. Demonstrating that the jurors in your case were biased will likely allow you to appeal the court’s ruling.
Types of Juror Misconduct
Here are several examples of jury misconduct:
Biased or Unqualified Jurors
Juror bias can include issues like racial or sexual discrimination, or a bias for or against the accused based on their personal circumstances or the type of crime they are accused of committing. Jurors may also be ineligible to serve on a jury if they are not citizens of the United States or have a permanent medical impairment.
Inappropriate Influence by Court Officers
Influence or intimidation of jury members by court officers, such as bailiffs, clerks, or court reporters, is not allowed. A case may be appealed if evidence exists that an officer of the court blackmailed, influenced, intimidated, threatened, or otherwise compromised one or more jury members.
Generally, jurors are prohibited from seeking out or engaging with any outside material relating to the case, such as news clips or magazine articles. This is especially true in high profile cases where there is likely to be a great deal of news coverage. However, if one or more jurors does so, it may be determined that the jury became tainted by this outside information, particularly if the juror shared the information with other jury members.
How to Get Help Appealing a Criminal Case for Jury Misconduct in Sacramento, CA
Being convicted of a crime of any kind is a frightening and tumultuous experience. Your future and rights are on the line and you only have a small window in which you can act. Jennifer Mouzis is a seasoned Sacramento criminal defense lawyer that can help you learn more about appellate law and pursue the appeal of your case if you’re eligible.
Contact Attorney Mouzis today for a consultation to discuss the merits of your appeal by calling (916) 822-8702.