IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/oup/qjecon/v127y2012i2p1017-1055.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Impact of Jury Race in Criminal Trials

Author

Listed:
  • Shamena Anwar
  • Patrick Bayer
  • Randi Hjalmarsson

Abstract

This article examines the impact of jury racial composition on trial outcomes using a data set of felony trials in Florida between 2000 and 2010. We use a research design that exploits day-to-day variation in the composition of the jury pool to isolate quasi-random variation in the composition of the seated jury, finding evidence that (i) juries formed from all-white jury pools convict black defendants significantly (16 percentage points) more often than white defendants, and (ii) this gap in conviction rates is entirely eliminated when the jury pool includes at least one black member. The impact of jury race is much greater than what a simple correlation of the race of the seated jury and conviction rates would suggest. These findings imply that the application of justice is highly uneven and raise obvious concerns about the fairness of trials in jurisdictions with a small proportion of blacks in the jury pool. Copyright 2012, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Shamena Anwar & Patrick Bayer & Randi Hjalmarsson, 2012. "The Impact of Jury Race in Criminal Trials," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 127(2), pages 1017-1055.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:qjecon:v:127:y:2012:i:2:p:1017-1055
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1093/qje/qjs014
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Shamena Anwar & Hanming Fang, 2006. "An Alternative Test of Racial Prejudice in Motor Vehicle Searches: Theory and Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(1), pages 127-151, March.
    2. Mustard, David B, 2001. "Racial, Ethnic, and Gender Disparities in Sentencing: Evidence from the U.S. Federal Courts," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 44(1), pages 285-314, April.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Thomas J. Miles, 2012. "Racial Disparities in Wiretap Applications before Federal Judges," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 41(2), pages 419-458.
    2. Bjerk, David J. & Helland, Eric, 2017. "Using a Ratio Test to Estimate Racial Differences in Wrongful Conviction Rates," IZA Discussion Papers 10631, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    3. Mujcic, Redzo & Frijters, Paul, 2013. "Still Not Allowed on the Bus: It Matters If You're Black or White!," IZA Discussion Papers 7300, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    4. Kevin Lang & Ariella Kahn-Lang Spitzer, 2020. "Race Discrimination: An Economic Perspective," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 34(2), pages 68-89, Spring.
    5. Nicola Persico & Petra Todd, 2004. "Using Hit Rate Tests to Test for Racial Bias in Law Enforcement: Vehicle Searches in Wichita," NBER Working Papers 10947, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Eduardo Gandelman & Nestor Gandelman & Julie Rothschild, 2008. "Diferencias entre los sexos en los procedimientos judiciales: Pruebas de campo de causas de vivienda en Uruguay," Research Department Publications 3251, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
    7. Vadim Volkov, 2016. "Legal and Extralegal Origins of Sentencing Disparities: Evidence from Russia's Criminal Courts," Journal of Empirical Legal Studies, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 13(4), pages 637-665, December.
    8. Ryon, Stephanie Bontrager & Chiricos, Ted & Siennick, Sonja E. & Barrick, Kelle & Bales, William, 2017. "Sentencing in light of collateral consequences: Does age matter?," Journal of Criminal Justice, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 1-11.
    9. Eric Zitzewitz, 2012. "Forensic Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 50(3), pages 731-769, September.
    10. Dario Cestau & Dennis Epple & Holger Sieg, 2017. "Admitting Students to Selective Education Programs: Merit, Profiling, and Affirmative Action," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 125(3), pages 761-797.
    11. Alberto Alesina & Eliana La Ferrara, 2014. "A Test of Racial Bias in Capital Sentencing," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(11), pages 3397-3433, November.
    12. Mariagiovanna Baccara & Allan Collard-Wexler & Leonardo Felli & Leeat Yariv, 2010. "Gender and Racial Biases: Evidence from Child Adoption," CESifo Working Paper Series 2921, CESifo.
    13. Amitabh Chandra & Douglas O. Staiger, 2010. "Identifying Provider Prejudice in Healthcare," NBER Working Papers 16382, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Ozkan Eren & Naci H. Mocan, 2020. "Judge Peer Effects in the Courthouse," NBER Working Papers 27713, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. Ajilore, Olugbenga, 2017. "Is There a 1033 Effect? Police Militarization and Aggressive Policing," MPRA Paper 82543, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    16. Lochner, L., 1999. "Education, Work, and Crime: Theory and Evidence," RCER Working Papers 465, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
    17. Max M. Schanzenbach, 2015. "Racial Disparities, Judge Characteristics, and Standards of Review in Sentencing," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 171(1), pages 27-47, March.
    18. Shawn D. Bushway & Emily G. Owens & Anne Morrison Piehl, 2012. "Sentencing Guidelines and Judicial Discretion: Quasi‐Experimental Evidence from Human Calculation Errors," Journal of Empirical Legal Studies, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 9(2), pages 291-319, June.
    19. Decio Coviello & Nicola Persico, 2013. "An Economic Analysis of Black-White Disparities in NYPD's Stop and Frisk Program," NBER Working Papers 18803, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    20. Christopher Cotton & Cheng Li, 2015. "Profiling, Screening, and Criminal Recruitment," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 17(6), pages 964-985, December.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H1 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government
    • J71 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Hiring and Firing
    • K0 - Law and Economics - - General
    • K14 - Law and Economics - - Basic Areas of Law - - - Criminal Law
    • K40 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - General
    • K41 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Litigation Process

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:oup:qjecon:v:127:y:2012:i:2:p:1017-1055. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Oxford University Press or Christopher F. Baum (email available below). General contact details of provider: .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.