Professor Ron Wright’s ‘Jury Sunshine Project’ featured on NPR podcast

Photo of Wake Forest Law Professor Ron Wright

Professor Ron Wright is one of the nation’s best known criminal justice scholars. He is the co-author of two casebooks in criminal procedure and sentencing; his empirical research concentrates on the work of criminal prosecutors.

Professor Ron Wright, the Needham Yancey Gulley Professor of Criminal Law, has been interviewing prosecutors across North Carolina as part of his research regarding jury selection known as the “Jury Sunshine Project.” His research will generate a database — the first of its kind — of jury selection outcomes in felony trials in all 100 counties of North Carolina.

Professor Wright’s research was most recently featured on the April 11, 2017, episode of 90.5 WESA’s “Criminal (IN)Justice Podcast, Episode 45, University of Pittsburgh law professor and show host David Harris.

The intro to the podcast states, “American juries are composed of 12 ordinary citizens tasked with bringing justice to the downtrodden and common sense to the law – no easy job. But who actually gets to serve? Research out of North Carolina shows some people get removed from jury pools much more often than others.”

WESA’s Megan Harris writes, “If you’re a registered voter or have a driver’s license, odds are, you’re eligible for jury duty. But just because you’re called, doesn’t mean you’ll serve.

“Research from the Jury Sunshine Project in North Carolina shows that some people get dismissed from the jury pool a lot more often than others.

“On this week’s episode of 90.5 WESA’s Criminal Injustice podcast, University of Pittsburgh law professor and show host David Harris talked to Wake Forest School of Law professor Ron Wright, who’s finding those exclusions make a big difference in the outcome of some cases.”