Capital Jury Project
The Capital Jury Project (CJP) is a national study of jury discretion in death penalty cases that began in 1991. In order to conduct interviews with former capital trials in all major regions of the country, the CJP brought together a broad consortium of legal and social science scholars. Typically, four jurors were administered a 2- to 3-hour interview about their entire trial and posttrial experience— from jury selection to sentencing decision to how the experience has influenced their present views on capital punishment. In order to provide a detailed comparison of the sentencing process, equal numbers of cases ending in life sentences and in death penalty sentences were sampled. Over the past 17 years, more than 1,200 juror interviews from some 350 capital trials have been conducted in 14 states. This entry describes some of the CJP's major findings, highlighting four of the most detailed lines of empirical inquiry ...