Suppose there is a hypothetical situation in which a person on a jury becomes infatuated with a criminal defendant. Suppose they make this explicitly clear during jury deliberations. For example, let's say it's a male juror and he says "she is too hot to go to jail even though she is clearly guilty, so I am voting 'not guilty.'"

Let's say the same juror persistently keeps voting "no" when the jury tries to decide if they should convict or not. Is there a process for the juror's opinion, that "she is clearly guilty," to be counted as the opinion they expressed, instead of their vote?

I've never served on a jury, so I don't know. Maybe it's more appropriate to ask if there is even a vote? Or do the jurors only need to express their opinion (of guilt/innocence) during the deliberations?


1 Answer 1


When the required number of jurors vote "yes" (or "no", or whatever the question is), then the jury has reached a verdict. There is no provision whereby the presiding juror can re-interpret "yes" as "no". In the case you describe, if a unanimous verdict is required that despite a reasonable inference that the last juror believes the defendant to be guilty, he has voted not guilty so the jury has not reached a verdict.

In case the guy in charge decides "In this case no means yes", thus falsely presents a supposed unanimous verdict, there is still an option for juror polling, in which case the not-guilty juror gets a chance to affirm his not guilty vote; though one of the parties has to request jury polling. If during polling the juror's response is not a clear "yes", then it could be more complicated.

  • note that during polling, Jurors may say exactly one word from two options: Yes or No. Anything else is generally not accepted, at best allowing honorary additions (your honor)
    – Trish
    Aug 4, 2023 at 8:07

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .