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Judge Brady: Criminal Jury Selection and Voir Dire

The Court will normally seat twelve jurors and two alternates for a trial. The defendant is entitled to ten (10), and the government to six (6), peremptory challenges, with one (1) additional peremptory per side for the two alternate jurors. Generally, 35 to 40 prospective jurors will be called to the trial. The parties will be given a random list of the prospective jurors' names. Attorneys for the parties may view the juror questionnaires in the Clerk's Office one business day before trial commences. Copies of the juror questionnaires will be made available to counsel on the morning of trial. The questionnaires will be collected by the Court at the conclusion of voir dire.

The Court will generally conduct the initial voir dire and will allow counsel to also conduct their own limited voir dire after the Court has completed the initial voir dire. When the Court and counsel are finished questioning the potential jurors, the Court will allow counsel time to confer with their clients regarding strikes to be made.

The Court will then call counsel to the bench and ask for challenges for cause and for peremptory challenges. Counsel for the Government and for the Defense will exercise any challenges for cause first, with the Government going first.  The Court will then ask counsel for peremptory challenges.  The Court will invite a single peremptory challenge at a time, first from the Government, then from the defendant, then back to the Government, and so on. The Court does not allow back strikes.  Once counsel report no further strikes to persons remaining in the jury box, those individuals will be accepted as jurors.  This procedure will continue until 12 jurors and 2 alternates are selected. The jurors seated in seats 13 and 14 of the jury box will be the alternate jurors.