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Understand the types of juries in the criminal justice system

The jury that hears your case might not be the trial jury. Many people don't realize that the grand jury might hear their case before the charges are levied.

The purpose of these two juries is very different. It is important that you understand this so that you know how they might impact your case.

A grand jury will come before a trial jury if the grand jury is used. This jury looks at the case that the prosecution has and lets the prosecutor know if it thinks that there is suitable evidence for a charge that will lead to a conviction.

The grand jury is large jury that works for months at a time; however, the jury doesn't meet daily. Instead, it only convenes periodically during its term of service. The informal proceedings that these 23 jurors go through aren't anything like the formal proceedings of a trial.

A trial jury is a group of people that hear the prosecution's case and your defense. These individuals will then decide if you are guilty or not guilty of each charge that is placed against you.

The trial jury consists of six to 12 members who work for the duration of your case. If the case lasts a day, that's how long they will work. If it lasts months, that is how long they will work.

Each of these juries can impact your future. Understanding how you should handle these situations might help your defense. This is especially important if you are facing a trial jury to determine your case's fate.

Source: FindLaw, "What's the Difference Between a Grand Jury and a Trial Jury?," accessed Aug. 24, 2017

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