The Role of Jury in Justice System of England
The jury is a fundamental part of the English judicial system, though few cases are decided by jury these days. It ensures that the judicial system works for the public’s benefit and not to benefit unjust leaders. It promotes not only a healthy society but also a healthy criminal justice system, where political leaders cannot silence their opponents by abusing the criminal justice system. Though it plays an important role, the constitutional position of Britain’s jury is vulnerable as it is not written in the constitution (Michaels amp. Laura 54). Although juries play a significant role in the criminal justice system, they usually deal with minor cases. The criminal cases are usually divided into three categories. Summary offences are the minor ones and are less serious in nature and are tried only in magistrate’s court. Indictable only is the most serious kind of offences while triable either way are the ones found between the serious offences and minor ones. The triable either way as indicated can be tried either in magistrate’s court or crown court (Towl amp. David 34). Majority of criminal cases are summary because they are commonly committed because they are least in nature and are listened in the magistrate’s court where the jury has no role. The other few remaining cases in the crown court, the defendants either plead guilty and there is no need for a jury or a judge informs the jury that the law demands the judge to acquit the defendant. Therefore, cases heard by the jury are very few when compared to the total number of cases brought before the court. The removal of the juries in civil cases was slow and it might give started in the mid-nineteenth century when judges were given authority to refuse a case be heard in front of a jury but by a sole judge. This led to the use of jury almost obsolete.