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By Dr. Ken Manges Ph.D. | Forensic Psychologist

After completing the voir dire process, you will hopefully have a jury favorable to your client’s needs. Many lawyers stop here and hope for the best in terms of how well their information comes across to the jury.

However, if you want to know how the jury is understanding your information, or areas that are confusing, you could set up a Shadow or Mirror Jury.

A shadow jury is a group of people who match the actual jury in that they come from the same communities, are similar ages, and have similar backgrounds and attitudes.

They observe the trial, leave the courtroom when the jury leaves, and only discuss the case with the jury consultant at the end of each day.

Shadow juries allow for daily monitoring of the trial so you can communicate additional information or correct misunderstanding or misimpression.

Shadow juries reduce the unpredictability of juries.

The use of a shadow jury is not a new concept by any means, but the use of tools like these is becoming increasingly common. The quick feedback they provide to the lawyer can be used to make changes to the day-to-day strategy, change the demeanor and approach to witnesses, and target closing arguments.

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