Do All Criminal Trials Have Juries

Full Video Transcript

The right to a jury trial is one of the basic rights the United States Constitution grants defendants in a criminal trial. If you are currently charged with a crime, you will have the right to a jury trial, specifically in criminal matters where the crime is punishable by incarceration of more thansix months. However, many cases are not decided by a jury because they are concluded by a plea agreement or a plea bargain. Under this kind of arrangement, a criminal defense attorney will negotiate the best legal resolution with the prosecutor on behalf of the client. However, if no plea bargain occurs, the defendant is able to waive the right to a jury trial and in its place he or she will have a bench trial, where the judge will be the finder of facts and determine guilt or innocence.

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