A young man is found strangled. They discover that he was a war protester. They learn that he butted heads with the father of a soldier who died in Afganistan when he disrupted the father's attempt to get his son honored. The father is arrested and tried and his lawyer mounts a defense centered on the fact that the father is also a veteran and that he suffers from PTSD.
Did You Know?
Allen v. United States (1896) was a United States Supreme Court case that first approved of a judge giving an instruction to a deadlocked jury for them to reconsider their votes in order to prevent a hung jury. It specifically is used when an overwhelming majority of the jury is in agreement and there are only one or two dissenters. While it isn't requiring the dissenting jurors to change their vote, it is encouraging them to be sure that their vote is based on the facts of the case and the law and not instead on their own personal feelings or beliefs. It also encourages them to consider that if their arguments are not convincing to the majority of their fellow jurors that they be absolutely sure that they truly are convinced, beyond a reasonable doubt, of their vote.
After that case such an instruction became known as an Allen charge and was used to prevent a hung jury due to a small minority disagreeing with the majority. Because it is used to dislodge jurors from entrenched positions, the Allen charge is sometimes referred to as the "dynamite charge" or the "hammer charge." Since the ruling was made in the federal Supreme Court, state courts are not required to abide by the ruling. In fact 23 states in the US have laws that prohibit the use of a Allen charge. See more
As Arthur points out when that type of choke hold is done properly it is rarely fatal, the only time it is fatal is when the person either is improperly trained or the person being subdued has some type of health problem (like cardiac or vascular disease). So it would be difficult for McCoy to prove to a jury, beyond a reasonable doubt, that the defendant had the prerequisite intent to kill when he used a non-lethal method designed to subdue. Therefore it would be a mistake to not allow the jury to consider the charge of manslaughter in the second degree, which would be what the defendant would be guilty of if he indeed did not have the intent to kill.
So the jury should actually be considering convicting on one of three charges, 1: Murder in the second degree if the prosecution is able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant had the intent to kill while suffering from no emotional disturbance. 2: Manslaughter in the first degree if the prosecution is able to prove an intent to kill but the defense is able to prove extreme emotional disturbance. 3: Manslaughter in the second degree if the prosecution fails to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant had the intent to kill. See more
No surprise the jury hung.
I'll try him again.
Your problem was too many blue collar jurors. They identified with Kenneth Silva.
How do you know who the holdouts were?
The people who escape jury duty, same people who escape active duty.