In every jury selection you have bad jurors–jurors you don’t like. Usually you are able to challenge these people for cause with questions that go to the heart of your case. But sometimes you have jurors that you know are going to be terrible for you, yet they give you all the right answers to the questions that go to the heart of your case.
When that happens you have to consider other ways to cause the bad jurors. Here are two of the most common unconventional ways to cause a bad juror:
The Juror Has a Physical Or Mental Condition
Sometimes a terrible juror that you have no way of excusing for cause for conventional reasons will have an injury or a mental condition that will let you kick them off your jury. This could be a physical injury like a back injury or a mental condition like schizophrenia. The only thing you need to do to get rid of this juror is to ask them whether the condition would distract them and keep them from paying attention to the evidence in the case.
If the answer is yes, they are usually gone.
The Juror Has a Pre-Scheduled Commitment That Cannot Be Rescheduled
Terrible jurors have lives too. And sometimes you’re fortunate enough that their lives make it hard or impossible for them to serve as a juror on your case. Ask those terrible jurors whether they have a plane to catch that they cannot reschedule, or a doctor’s appointment that they have been waiting on for months. Most judges will excuse a juror who says that he or she has a flight to catch or an important doctor’s appointment that he or she would rather not miss.
The Juror Has Child-Care Issues
Sometimes terrible jurors have kids and no one who can care for them. Make sure to find out from your bad jurors who is in this situation. Most judges will agree to excuse a juror who says that he or she has little ones at home who they cannot arrange care for.