MADISON, Wis. (AP) – The Wisconsin Senate is set to pass a bill that would do away with six-person juries in misdemeanor cases.
The state Supreme Court ruled in 1998 that a state law providing for a six-person jury in misdemeanor cases conflicted with a provision in the Wisconsin Constitution requiring a 12-person jury in all criminal cases.
The bill eliminates the six-person misdemeanor jury and mandates a 12-person jury for every criminal case unless the parties involved and a judge agree to a smaller panel.
The Assembly’s Law Revision Committee, which is controlled by Republicans, introduced the bill in December. The Assembly passed it last month. The Senate is scheduled to take up on Tuesday. Approval would send the bill on to Gov. Scott Walker.