Saturday, December 16, 2017
Jeffrey Bellin (William & Mary) has this piece at USA Today. In part:
The ruling in Connecticut v. Holmes — the appeal of a Connecticut murder case that ultimately landed a black man in prison after a potential African-American juror was eliminated — should alarm anyone who cares about democracy.
During jury selection in the original case, "W.T.," who was African American and being interviewed by both the prosecution and the defense as a potential juror, expressed concerns about law enforcement in answer to questions posed by the prosecutor.
. . .
But W.T. also emphasized that he would follow the law and "judge (the case) by the facts."
Still, the prosecutor eliminated W.T. The state explained that the elimination was "race-neutral" and expressed concern about the fact that W.T.'s family members "have been convicted and have served time. ... If we had a Caucasian who was in the same situation," they would also have eliminated him from the jury, the state said.