☰ In this section

The Champion

April 2006 , Page 56 

Search the Champion Looking for something specific?

Preview of Member Only Content

For full access: login or Become a Member Join Now

Who Said Voir Dire Wasn't Important?

By Dennis G. Terez

Judges need to let lawyers be advocates. But because of the way some district judges interpret Rule 24(a) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, they are not letting that happen. Let me illustrate the problem, and then propose several practical steps in the right direction.

One note before we begin our discussion. While the problem set forth here focuses on federal court where district judges routinely conduct voir dire alone, the problem is by no means limited to federal court. Moreover, the pitfalls and strategies to follow apply equally to federal and state court.

Rule 24(a) says that the “court may examine prospective jurors or may permit the attorneys for the parties to do so.” Seeming to acknowledge that they went down the wrong path with this wording, the rule’s drafters added that if the court examines the jurors, “it must permit the attorneys for the parties to: (A) ask further questions that the court considers proper; or (B) submit further questions that the court may a

Want to read more?

The Champion archive is reserved for NACDL members.

NACDL members, please login to read the rest of this article.

Not a member? Join now.
Join Now
Or click here to see an overview of NACDL Member benefits.

See what NACDL members say about us.

To read the current issue of The Champion in its entirety, click here.

  • Media inquiries: Contact NACDL's Director of Public Affairs & Communications Ivan J. Dominguez at 202-465-7662 or idominguez@nacdl.org
  • Academic Requests: Full articles of The Champion Magazine are available for academic and research purposes in the WestLaw and LexisNexis databases.
Advertisement Advertise with Us

In This Section

Advertisement Advertise with Us