Judging jury service: Results of the north Carolina administrative office of the courts juror survey*

Authors

  • Brian L. Cutler Ph.D.,

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    • 600 Yorktown Drive, Chapel Hill, NC 27516, USA.
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    • Dr. Cutler is a Professor of Psychology, at Florida International University and a trial Consultant with Jurytactics, LLC.

  • Donna M. Hughes Ph.D.


  • *

    The survey research reported herein was conducted by North Carolina State University's Center for Urban Affairs and Community Services on behalf of the North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts. Any opinions expressed in this article represent the views of the authors and not those of the sponsoring institutions. The authors wish to recognize Miriam Saxon for her numerous contributions to the survey project, her assistance with facilitating this manuscript, and for her comments on the various drafts. The authors wish to also recognize Jane Clare, Kimberly Hale, Rachel Rose and Leslie Karwoski for their technical assistance with various aspects of this research.

Abstract

This study examined venirepersons' and jurors' levels of satisfaction with jury service. Surveys were distributed to all persons who reported for state court jury service during two one-week periods in each North Carolina county. Questions concerned satisfaction with various aspects of jury service, the effects of service, hardships experienced, details of and reactions to cases heard, and basic demographic information. Responses were obtained from 82 of the 100 counties and 4,654 venirepersons (of whom 1,478 served as jurors). Consistent with prior research on juror experiences, results generally revealed high levels of satisfaction and positive opinions about various aspects of jury service. Service did not influence opinions about the courts for most respondents, and those whose opinions changed tended to become more positive about jury service. Suggestions for future research emphasize giving higher priority to publishing unpublished research on jury experience, explaining the high satisfaction levels observed in samples of jurors, and examining the impact of trial reform on juror satisfaction levels. Copyright © 2001 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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