Enlarge Page:

Become a Member. Learn How >

The People’s Pardon: Jury Nullification in the American Legal System

Kirsten C. Tynan

Jury nullification commonly refers to jurors voting not guilty, as a matter of conscience, even though they may believe beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant violated the law. Dating back at least as far as 1649, this “people’s pardon” power is still occasionally exercised in the United States and elsewhere. Yet, with well over 90 percent of criminal charges settled without trial by jury, the protective role of the jury, including jury nullification, is on the verge of extinction. This lecture will examine the intended role of juries and jury nullification and the role they actually play in our legal system today, including recent, local examples.

Instructor: Kirsten Tynan has worked with the Fully Informed Jury Association (FIJA), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit educational organization, for 10 years and currently serves as Executive Director. FIJA seeks to preserve the jury as the final arbiter in our courts of law by informing the members of the public about their rights, powers, and responsibilities as jurors.

Coordinator: Mark Evans

Course Number: OSHR-70005   Credit: 0 units


Email to a friend


Upcoming Sections