Attorney Kevin O’Keefe has trained attorneys in Florida and New Hampshire on how to select juries through panel voir dire. The law permitting extensive questioning of jurors in Florida gave Kevin experience with over 30 Fort Lauderdale jury panels in two years. (In New Hampshire, voir dire was not statutorily authorized in criminal cases until 2014.) Most recently, in 2019, Kevin trained public defenders and private attorneys at New Hampshire’s Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers DWI Training.
Whether or not you are an attorney, you are likely familiar with the jury selection or "voir dire" process from jury service or courtroom experience. Attorneys are permitted to question jurors in a group setting to ensure their impartiality. First impressions, honesty, and exposing biases against clients are just some of the reasons voir dire is so important. Asking boring questions or reciting the law is the fastest way to lose a jury from the start. Don’t be fooled into outdated or lazy thinking that any jury is the same. Every human — and thus, every jury — is different. Developing questions that de-select harmful jurors, rather than select a non-existent perfect jury, is the core principle of jury selection.
Strategies for panel voir dire depend on the legal issues at stake and on the client. When Reis & O'Keefe represents you, we will craft the best strategy for your case. Jury selection is not an isolated prelude to a trial. Weaving in case theory, combatting your opponent’s strategy, and perfecting cause challenges are key concepts that require expertise and experience.
Our firm is available for consultation and creation of voir dire strategy in criminal and civil matters. Attorney O’Keefe is available to help with your panel voir dire and jury selection in the following ways:
We welcome you to contact Reis & O'Keefe for more information.