Beyond a Reasonable Doubt Movie: The Issues That Are Related to Criminal Justice
It is a fundamental rule.
This could be achieved by giving the jury information while they are constructing their reasonable doubt exemplars, so as to influence these mental models. For example, “while thinking about what constitutes a reasonable doubt, one should keep in mind that the current case carries with it the possibility of death.”Jurors would thus be free to take the penalty into consideration when constructing their reasonable doubt mental model (Jon O. Newman, 1993).
Real juror bias does exist, though, and the criminal justice system still has a way to go in developing better techniques to ferret it out. That problem, however, should not be laid at the media's feet. A criminal trial serves a distinct function in our society: it imposes punishment and (usually) stigma on an individual for violating its laws.
Robert C. Power, Reasonable and Other Doubts: The Problem of Jury Instruction, 67 Tenn. L. Rev. 45, 47 (1999)
Jon O. Newman, Beyond “Reasonable Doubt,” 68 N.Y.U. L. Rev. 979, 984 (1993)
Thomas Mulrine, Note and Comment, Reasonable Doubt: How in the World is it Defined?, 12 Am. U. J. Int’l L. & Pol’y 195, 198 (1997)