What is a Grand Jury? The Ultimate Answer
Over the past few months, grand juries have spurred a heated discussion in both online and offline platforms. But truthfully, not many people understand who grand juries are and what they do. As you Google search for things such as ‘what is a VPN on iPhone’ it is crucial to also research on the legal system in the country, and learning about the grand jury is critical.
Now that you need to understand who a grand jury is, sit back and read this post to the end!
What is a grand jury?
Basically, a grand jury is a group of citizens who have been mandated by the law to conduct a series of legal proceedings and investigate a potential crime. They are also empowered to decide on whether criminal charges should be oppressed on people found capable of particular crimes.
The grand jury collects physical evidence and can summon individuals to testify. This group is independent, and courts of law never preside over it’s functioning.
In the United States, a grand jury is composed of 12-23 people who are bonafide citizens, though this number may reduce depending on the state. In other countries such as Ireland and Japan, juries also perform as an integral part of the local government authority.
Is a grand jury different from a regular jury?
Certainly! A grand jury is a body whose mandate is to investigate a crime. It is used by county and federal state prosecutors to determine whether there is enough evidence to press criminal charges against individuals.
On the other hand, a regular jury, also known as a petit jury, is composed of 6-12 individuals, and its primary mandate is to hear trial cases. Simply put, this jury only listens to the fact and makes decisions in civil and criminal cases.
What happens in case a felony is committed?
If a felony is committed, a few things will happen. They include;
- Even if the perpetrator is not arrested, evidence can be presented to the grand jury. This is called a ‘no arrest indictment.’ This forms a basis on which a rest warrant is issued. Therefore, when a suspect is finally apprehended, he/she will already be indicted.
- After the arrest, the case is presented to the grand jury within a week
- If there is no arrest made because the perpetrator is unknown or cannot be traced, an arrest will only be made if the grand jury interdicts.
Can the law around the grand jury be changed?
Well, we cannot say that the law that governs grand juries cannot be changed. Experts say that with an act of Congress, this law can easily be changed.
Well, if you have been yearning to learn about grand juries and how they operate, this post is all you need. Re-read it and educate others!