This post originally ran on our Legal Current Blog.
You can hardly turn on the television or open a newspaper without seeing something about the Casey Anthony trial. The question of what happened to 2-year-old Caylee Anthony during the summer of 2008 has plagued the minds of millions of Americans. Many were glued to television sets and Twitter feeds to keep up with the latest findings in arguably one of the most publicized cases ever.
You’d practically have to be living under a rock to not have heard or read something about the case over the past three years. While this is good for the media, it creates a nightmare when it comes to selecting an unbiased jury.
As it stands today, the basis for what makes a fair and impartial jury is largely focused around the notion that potential jurors have little or no exposure to the case before trial. In instances of highly publicized cases, such as this one, the question that is always asked of potential jurors is whether or not they can put aside their preconceived notions, and ignore information that they may have already heard, in order to base their verdict solely on the evidence presented in court.
And in a case like Casey Anthony’s where the majority of the public wrote her off as guilty before the trial even began, this was easier said than done.
Richard Gabriel, a trial advisor for Casey Anthony’s defense team, talks about the jury selection process and the unprecedented challenges that the team faced in order to ensure that their client received a fair trial.
Richard has more than 26 years of experience as a trial advisor and has assisted counsel in several prominent cases including the O.J. Simpson, Heidi Fleiss and Whitewater trials. Richard is also the co-author, with Ted Donner, of the book Jury Selection Strategy & Science which provides guidance for attorneys on how to navigate the jury selection process in order to give their client a fair trial.
You can listen to the interview now by clicking the Play button on the built-in player below, or click here to listen later. (more…)