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Saturday, September 7, 2019

Jury Nullification

     Jury nullification occurs when a jury returns a verdict of Not Guilty despite its belief that the defendant is guilty of the violation charged. The jury in effect nullifies a law that it believes is either immoral or wrongfully applied to the defendant whose fate they are charged with deciding.

     The most famous nullification is the 1735 trial of John Peter Zenger, charged with printing seditious libels of the Governor of the Colony of New York, William Crosby. Despite the fact that Zenger clearly printed the alleged libels...the jury nonetheless returned a verdict of Not Guilty...

     Recent examples of jury nullification might include acquittals of "mercy killers," including Dr. Jack Kevorkian, and minor drug offenders...

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