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Apr 6, 2023

Jurors’ names in crash trial won’t be released, judge rules

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — A judge denied a newspaper’s request for jurors’ names in the case of a truck driver who was acquitted of all counts for the deaths of seven motorcyclists, saying Tuesday that the panel endured harsh criticism from many, including the governor, and feared for their safety. The Boston Globe sought the […]

Jul 27, 2022

COA reverses conviction on failure to provide jury with definitions 

A trial court erred when it refused to instruct the jury on the definition of second-degree criminal domestic violence (CDV) and moderate bodily injury as part of its first-degree CDV jury instruction, a panel of the South Carolina Court of Appeals has ruled, reversing the defendant’s conviction for criminal domestic violence of a high and […]

Dec 1, 2020

Lack of individual jury poll requires reversal

  There’s been a lot of talk this year of polls and polling errors, but a polling error of a very different sort—a show-of-hands poll taken of jurors just after they handed down a conviction—meant that the conviction had to be tossed out and a new trial granted, the South Carolina Court of Appeals has […]

Sep 30, 2020

Why virtual jury research is as effective as in-person

By Taylor Lyden In this new age of regional lockdowns and social distancing, counsel have had to adjust trial preparation significantly. While some jurisdictions are slowly opening and attempting to hold trials safely, many places are still in the early phases of re-opening and still prohibiting gatherings of more than 25 people or requiring quarantine […]

Aug 22, 2019

Jury backs Nicholas Sparks in lawsuit by former school head

A federal jury sided Wednesday with novelist Nicholas Sparks and the private Christian school he founded in his North Carolina hometown, dismissing claims by the school’s former headmaster that he was unjustly fired and then slandered by the author. Jurors spent about three hours before deciding that the author of “Message in a Bottle” and […]

Jan 23, 2019

The five most common faults of trial lawyers

One of the great privileges of being a judge is to be able to speak with jurors after a trial, to thank them and to ask them questions about the process. Many jurors, with a little encouragement, will offer their views about the presentation of the case — what worked, what didn’t, and how it […]

Oct 24, 2018

COA: Judge improperly amended jury’s verdict

A multimillion-dollar jury verdict over construction defects must be reduced due to an offset error, the South Carolina Court of Appeals has ruled. The ruling means that Marick Home Builders will pay $1,179,249 instead of the $5,145,812 that the trial court initially ordered, in addition to a settlement amount worth about $1.86 million and a […]

Mar 29, 2018

Federal jurors get pay increase

For the first time in 28 years, pay for federal jurors has increased, but it still remains below the federal minimum wage. The change was included in the $1.3 trillion federal spending bill that passed March 23, The Washington Post reports. The pay increase comes at the urging of South Carolina Republican Trey Gowdy, Congresswoman Eleanor […]

Jan 11, 2017

No sandbagging allowed

The truth is out there — but circuit judges can no longer tell jurors to search or seek it, according to the South Carolina Supreme Court’s decision in a case involving a convicted murderer serving life in prison. Judge’s were warned against telling jurors to act as truthseekers in State v. Michael Beaty Jr., a […]

Nov 30, 2016

Jury charge in sexual assault cases no longer allowed

The South Carolina Supreme Court wants trial courts to take note: They are no longer allowed to instruct juries in criminal sexual assault cases that the testimony of the victim doesn’t need to be corroborated. A Nov. 2 per curiam opinion reiterated the Supreme Court’s holding from earlier this year that instructing juries on S.C. […]

Nov 22, 2016

Criminal Practice – Judge Should Have Provided Jury Instructions

U.S. v. Clarke (Lawyers Weekly No. 001-164-16, 20 pp.) (Wynn, J.) No. 15-4299, Nov. 18, 2016; USDC at Alexandria, Va.; 4th Cir. Holding: A district court did not err in refusing to suppress evidence found in an inventory search of defendant’s vehicle, which police impounded after arresting defendant when he met an undercover agent at […]

May 11, 2016

Be careful what you ask for

In late March, a trial judge in Charleston continued a post-conviction relief hearing centered on a study that was used to support allegations of race-based jury selection in a death penalty case after a prosecutor pointed out that the analysis was incomplete. Assistant State Attorney General Melody Brown came to court with four cases that […]

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