A juror’s mistrust of chiropractors has led a New Jersey appellate court to order a new trial in a civil lawsuit filed over a 2006 traffic accident.
The Courier-Post of Cherry Hill reports the three-judge panel found the juror’s views may have tainted the verdict in the defendant’s favor. It also found the trial judge didn’t take adequate measures when another juror expressed concern over possible bias in letter sent about a month after the trial concluded.
Among the witnesses at trial was the plaintiff’s chiropractor, who treated her for injuries caused by the accident.
The juror who wrote the letter claimed another jury member “was highly prejudiced against chiropractors” and had made comments that “tainted the minds of the remainder of the jury.”
The letter-writer also noted that when jurors were specifically asked if they could be unbiased in accepting the testimony of a chiropractor, the suspect juror did not state her feelings toward chiropractors.
After questioning the letter-writer at a September 2011 hearing, the trial judge denied the plaintiff’s bid for a new trial, saying “the jury verdict was not sufficiently tainted.” But the appellate panel said the judge should have interviewed all other deliberating jurors, not just the letter-writer.
Was this article valuable?
Here are more articles you may enjoy.