The Grand Jury Essay by The Research Group

The Grand Jury
Examines the development of grand juries.
# 24700 | 900 words | 4 sources | 2002 | US
Published on Apr 11, 2003 in Law (General)

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Examines the development of grand juries. Their history in England and America. Grand jury independence. The present use of such panels. Strengths and weaknesses of the grand jury system. Current function of returning criminal indictments, and as an investigative body. Special grand juries. Potential for abuse. Value of grand juries as a check on the state.

From the Paper:

"The grand jury is a unique feature of Anglo-American law that has existed since the 12th century. Though grand juries have largely fallen out of favor, they are still used in many American jurisdictions. This is particularly true at the federal level because of Constitutional clauses regarding grand juries. This paper will examine the development of grand juries, the present use of such panels, and the strengths and weaknesses of the system.

Grand juries trace their lineage to 1166, when Henry II, the King of England, employed a body of locals as his investigative arm. The initial grand juries did not hear evidence per se, but rather were the sources of evidence, reporting what they had heard and seen—in other words, gossip (Frankel and Naftalis, pp. 6-7)."

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