My father says that if you want to, you can always find a way to be excused from a jury without lying. One technique to add to the list is knuckle cracking. It seems generations of lawyers have been told that knuckle crackers are trouble makers and they do everything they can to strike them.
I learned that in an interesting article on jury selection in Psychology Today, Unnatural Selection.
How effectively do demographics predict jurors’ responses? They’re “barely important,” Dimitrius says. “[But] that’s what lawyers still learn in law school: You can’t have any males on a rape case, for instance. Ridiculous stuff. Very rarely will we find a demographic that’s a factor.” The O.J. case was an exception. Of the final 12 jurors, eight were black women, and only two had college degrees. Dimitrius wasn’t surprised when the panel sympathized with O.J., considered prosecuting attorney Marcia Clark a “bitch,” and ignored the DNA evidence.
Much more predictive are juror personalities (during voir dire do they appear stern? compassionate?), experiences (have they been the victim of a violent crime?), and attitudes (how do they feel about large corporations?). “I’m matching our case with the juror’s life experience or value system,” says Texas consultant Robert Hirschhorn, who’s worked on the trials of Ken Lay, Terry Nichols, and William Kennedy Smith. In a breach of contract case, he wants people with “a real strong sense of right and wrong, black and white—the kind of people who say, ‘a deal’s a deal.’