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Reducing Bias in a Jury Source List by Combining Voters and Drivers

NCJ Number
Judicature Volume: 67 Issue: 2 Dated: (August 1983) Pages: 87-94
C H Logan; G F Cole
Date Published
8 pages
This Connecticut study compared the representativeness of voter-registration and driver-license jury source lists as well as a combination of the lists in comparison with a sample of the general adult population.
The various groups were compared on the factors of sex, age, race, education, religion, political party, income, employment, occupation, job duration, and union membership. A list based on registered voters would contain disparities from the general adult population in the areas of age and political party, while a list based on licensed drivers would contain disparities on education, income, employment, and occupation. The disparities in these two source lists are numerous enough and large enough to challenge the representativeness of either registered voters or licensed drivers as a solitary source list. When both groups are combined, however, not one identifiable subgroup can be found that is disproportionate to its share in the general adult population. Thus, the findings suggest that the best option for a juror source list is a combination of voter registration and driver's license lists. Unless there is evidence favoring other sources in a particular jurisdiction, it should be presumed that these findings for Connecticut would generalize to other areas as well. Tabular data and 17 footnotes are provided.


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