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Lawmakers discuss jury selection
Currently in the state of Florida, the only trials that receive a twelve member jury are ones where the death penalty are involved. But a group of lawmakers are considering changing that in the future."
Two proposed bills-- facing committees- call for twelve member juries in certain criminal cases.
One proposes a twelve member jury on all felony cases where life in prison is a possibility, not just the death penalty.
The other calls for a twelve member jury in all criminal cases.
Only seven states currently allow juries smaller than twelve members.
The latest change was spurred by the trial of George Zimmerman in the death of Trayvon Martin.
Zimmerman was charged with second degree murder and manslaughter, did not face the death penalty, and therefore had a six member jury.
The jury was made up of six women, five of whom were white.
Lawmakers proposing the change say that by adding members, juries could become more diverse and therefore intepret evidence in different ways.
One of the bills up for debate says that the jury must reflect the demographics of the county where the trial is taking place."