The Criminal Trial Process: From Jury Selection to Sentencing

1340 Words Feb 4th, 2018 5 Pages
This study intends to set out the various steps in the criminal trial process in the American justice system. A trial is described as a "legal forum for resolving individual disputes, and in the case of a criminal charge, it is a means for establishing whether an accused person is legally guilty of an offense. The trial process varies with respect to whether the matter at issue is civil in nature or criminal. In either case, a jury acts as a fact-finding body for the court in assessing information and evidence that is presented by the respective parties in a case. A judge presides over the court and addresses all the legal issues that arise during the trial. A judge also instructs the jury how to apply the facts to the laws that will govern in a given case." (3rd Judicial District, 2012)
I. Jury Selection
The first phase of a criminal jury trial is focused on selecting specific jurors, which is accomplished through a process referred to as 'voir dire' which is a screening of potential jurors. In the criminal trial involving an offense categorized as a felony "12 jurors and up to six alternate jurors may be chosen." (3rd Judicial District, ) Voir dire of the jury involves the prosecuting and defense attorneys questioning the potential jurors and…
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