For example, during Bill Cosby's trial, there were huge crowds with signs screaming all over outside the courthouse. I assume that every juror had to walk across that every day to get to the court.

Isn't that clearly tampering with the jury? You can't expect them to wade through a pool of people screaming some viewpoint and not expect the jury to be coloured by that. Does this at all lead to a mistrial, or is anything done to curb this effect? Or is it just accepted and nothing is done about it?

  • I'm commenting as I cannot readily find a reputable source to cite in an answer - In E&W there are seperate entrances for jurors (and court officers and certain witnesses) - often discrete and round the back of the court to prevent them having to wade through a baying mob.
    – user35069
    Commented Aug 31, 2022 at 21:43
  • The U.S. legal system is highly decentralized and the decisions are made on more or less a courthouse by courthouse basis with very little direct formal policy guidance at the state or national level in statutes, regulations, or case law.
    – ohwilleke
    Commented Aug 31, 2022 at 22:14

1 Answer 1


I don't know about the Bill Cosby trial, but in cases where there's a strong public debate in the media, the jury is usually sequestered (see the O.J Simpson case). I guess they would enter the courtroom by some back entrance, led by a Marshalls escort (or their State-level equivalent), or something like that.

  • 2
    Marshalls would be the Federal court. OJ and Cosby were both state level courts (It would likely be the Sheriff's office for the county the court is in). Courts usually have back entrances for police to for prison transport. It would be no thing for the court to have jury members escorted in a van out of these back entrances since the protests will be occupying space in front of the building.
    – hszmv
    Commented Sep 1, 2022 at 12:37

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