Juries are made up of average people who make important decisions regarding a particular case. Those who face criminal charges should understand how juries function. There are two types of juries, and both serve different purposes; a grand jury and a trial jury.
A grand jury assists prosecutors in deciding whether they should bring forward criminal charges against a particular suspect. A grand jury consists of 23 people who work closely with the prosecutor. Although this type of jury duty may go on for several months, jurors only have to work for a few days out of the month. The prosecution presents all the evidence to the grand jury. Jurors have the right to allow as much evidence as possible, without any restrictions. The parties that are presented in front of a grand jury may not have an attorney because the process is flexible. The proceedings are strictly held behind closed doors so that witnesses can speak freely without any fear. The verdict of a grand jury is of great importance for the prosecution, because that verdict may decide if they press charges against the suspect.
On the other hand, a trial jury consists of six to twelve people who sit during the trial and have to be present at every hearing. The proceedings are controlled by the judge, and both parties present their case in the presence of their attorneys. Evidence is carefully chosen and entered only if it is completely reliable and lawful. Trial jurors may not have the right to ask questions and must make decisions according to what they hear at the trial.
If you are facing criminal charges and want to know more about the role of a jury in your trial, you might want to hire an experienced defense attorney. The attorney will help you understand the situation and devise a strong defense strategy for you.