The pool of prospective jurors from which the jury panel is selected.
Jury Voir Dire
The process of questioning a panel of prospective jurors to select the final panel; roughly it means "to speak the truth."
Challenges for Cause
The motion that a prospective juror should be excluded because he or she is incapable of being impartial.
The motion that excludes a prospective juror from the jury panel without specific reason or justification.
The power of a jury in a criminal case to acquit a defendant for any reason or no reason at all. When a jury in a criminal case exercises this power, its decision cannot be appealed.
The power of a court to punish persons for failure to obey court orders or coerce them into obeying court orders.
Any evidence that tends to provde the innocence of an accused.
A reciprocal exchange of information between the prosecuting and defending attorneys, before trial, either as ordered by the court in a particular case or required by statute or rule.
The standard of proof in a criminal case. A doubt based upon reason: that which would make a reasonable person hesitate to act in connection with important affairs of life.
Order of Trial
Prosecution's Opening Statements
Defendant's Opening Statements
A summary of how the prosecution expects its evidence to show the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt or how the defense attorney expects to raise a reasonable doubt. It is not an argument but rather a road map of the prosecution's case-in-chief.
That portion of the trial that compromises the main evidence, for either the prosecution or the defense.
The requirement that the prosecution present sufficient evidence to establish that a crime was committed by someone.
Prima Facie Case
The amount of proof the prosecution myst present in its case-in-chief; evidence sufficient to establish that a crime was committed and that the defendant probably did it.
Judgment of Acquittal
A judicial decision on whether the prosecution has satisfied its burden during the presentation of its case-in-chief. If the defense's motion for judgment of acquittal is granted, the case is over.
The questioning of a witness by the side who calls that witness.
A question that suggests to the witness the answer sought by the questioner.
Legal arguments raised by opposing counsel during trial to prevent a witness from testifying or other evidence from being admitted.
Rulings on Objections
The judge's decision on evidentiary objections:overruled, the witness may testify; or sustained, the witness must not answer the question.
The rigorous examination of a witness by opposing counsel in which the questioner seeks to detract from the witness's credibility.
Further questioning, after cross, for the limited purpose of rebutting or clarifying information brought out during cross-examination.
Further questioning, after redirect, for clarification purposes. This, and subsequent questioning, is purely within the the discretion of the trial judge.
A reason under the law that allows a defendant to claim to be exonerated, one that the defendnat must affirmatively claim and prove.
The review of evidence by the jury in an attempt to reach a verdict.