March 4, 2007
Should the Libby jury be told Scooter could be sentenced on acquitted counts?
As detailed here and here and here, the Libby jury concluded deliberations last week by asking a question about the meaning of reasonable doubt. Though others are trying to read the tea leaves presented by the jury's question, I am thinking about whether the jury might be working on a split verdict on the five counts. I am also wonder if folks think the jurors should be told that, even if they acquit on some counts, Libby could still be sentenced based on all the acquitted conduct if they come back with even a single conviction on the five counts.
Some related posts on Libby sentencing and on acquitted conduct:
- Pre-conviction speculation about possible sentencing term for Libby
- Could Libby's decision not to testify now result in an obstruction-of-justice enhancement?
- Sincere questions about acquitted conduct sentencing
March 4, 2007 at 07:27 PM | Permalink
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Of course they should. They should also be told that they can nullify.
Unfortunately, that's not the way our system works.
Posted by: William Jockusch | Mar 4, 2007 9:30:27 PM
Are we seriously suggesting that it should be fine and dandy to argue or even instruct on jury nullification? Here is the law of this State, but feel free to ignore it for any reason you want. What kind of message does that send?
Posted by: LonesomeClerk | Mar 5, 2007 2:43:50 PM
Absolutely. Prosecutors have discretion to bring charges or not. Shouldn't jurors have discretion too?
Our society gives prosecutors enormous power. Jury Nullification should work as a check on that power.
Posted by: William Jockusch | Mar 5, 2007 4:11:03 PM