Missouri Constitution

Article I
BILL OF RIGHTS
Section 22(a)

August 28, 2013



Right of trial by jury--qualification of jurors--two-thirds verdict.

Section 22(a). That the right of trial by jury as heretofore enjoyed shall remain inviolate; provided that a jury for the trial of criminal and civil cases in courts not of record may consist of less than twelve citizens as may be prescribed by law, and a two-thirds majority of such number concurring may render a verdict in all civil cases; that in all civil cases in courts of record, three-fourths of the members of the jury concurring may render a verdict; and that in every criminal case any defendant may, with the assent of the court, waive a jury trial and submit the trial of such case to the court, whose finding shall have the force and effect of a verdict of a jury.

Source: Const. of 1875, Art. II, 28 (as amended Nov. 6, 1900).

(1953) On appeal, in misdemeanor trial, where jury was waived, the finding of the court on the merits must be allowed to stand if supported by substantial evidence. State v. Sargent, 241 A. 1085, 256 S.W.2d 265.

(1953) Since constitutional guarantees of sections 10 and 22, Article I of the Constitution, are for protection against governmental action, and not applicable to acts of individuals as between themselves, contention that labor union's action denied such rights to one of its members does not raise a constitutional question so as to give supreme court jurisdiction of cause. Junkins v. Local Union No. 6313, etc. (Mo.), 263 S.W.2d 337.

(1963) Fact that no women were on the jury panel, without a claim or showing of purposeful and systematic exclusion of women, did not establish that jury was improperly selected to the prejudice of defendant. State v. Andrews (Mo.), 371 S.W.2d 324.

(1964) Where defendant, on appeal from magistrate court to circuit court, filed untimely request under rules of the circuit court for jury trial and did not attack constitutionality of the court rule until trial day, constitutional question was not in issue since not raised at first opportunity and supreme court did not have jurisdiction of appeal. Meadowbrook Country Club v. Davis (Mo.), 384 S.W.2d 611.

(1965) An accused has no absolute right to elect that he shall be tried by court without a jury; his waiver of jury must be agreed to by court to be effective. State v. Taylor (Mo.), 391 S.W.2d 835.

(1965) Landowner who failed to file written demand for a jury trial before the assignment of commissions, along with a description of the property to be taken, as required by St. Louis charter waived right to jury trial. City of St. Louis v. Union Quarry and Construction Co. (Mo.), 394 S.W.2d 300.

(1968) There are no educational requirements, other than the ability to read, write, speak, and understand the English language, for jury service, and it is no ground for disqualification of veniremen that at the outset they are unfamiliar with or do not know the meaning of technical legal terms. Parker v. Wallace (Mo.), 431 S.W.2d 136.

(1968) Use of a six member jury in trial for violation of city ordinance does not violate the constitutional guarantee of a right to trial by jury. State ex rel. Cox v. Wilson (Mo.), 435 S.W.2d 333.

(1969) In every criminal case any defendant may, with the assent of the court, waive a jury trial and submit the trial of the case to the court, or may, with the assent of the court, waive a jury of twelve citizens and submit the trial of the case to a jury consisting of less than twelve citizens. State v. McGee (Mo. en banc), 447 S.W.2d 270.

(1971) There is no constitutional right to a trial by jury in municipal ordinance prosecution where the maximum period of imprisonment does not exceed six months. State ex rel. Cole v. Nigro (Mo.), 471 S.W.2d 933.

(1971) Assuming that record made of defense counsel's waiver of jury trial in prosecution for possession of narcotic drugs was inadequate, the additional record made in the Rule 27.26 evidentiary hearing established that defendant was fully aware at time of trial of his right to be tried by a jury and nothing in the records would justify a conclusion that finding of trial judge in the Rule 27.26 proceeding, that defendant knowingly and intelligently waived jury trial, was erroneous. Young v. State (Mo.), 473 S.W.2d 390.

(1972) Evidence supported action of trial court in action for damages for injuries to plaintiff's back in granting defendant new trial where jurors' failure to truthfully answer questions asked on voir dire in regard to prior back injuries and claims amounted to deception and deprived defendant of fair trial by jury. Rodenhauser v. Lashly (Mo.), 481 S.W.2d 231.

(1973) Held that trial by jury cannot be waived by informal statement by counsel that jury would not be required. Randolph v. Simpson (A.), 500 S.W.2d 289.

(1976) Where defendant waived jury trial under the misunderstanding of defendant and defendant's attorney that if the trial court decided to refuse parole after submission to court on an agreed statement of facts, defendant would be given an opportunity to withdraw waiver of jury trial, the waiver was held to be not intelligently made and judgment was reversed and cause remanded. State v. Sharp (Mo.), 533 S.W.2d 601.

(1978) Held, not unconstitutional to require court to hear case without jury in magistrate court since jury trial could later be had as a matter of right in circuit court. Rice v. Lucas (Mo.), 560 S.W.2d 850.

(1996) Right to jury trial applies only to those causes of action which had that right prior to 1820. Hammons v. Ehney, 924 S.W.2d 843 (Mo.banc 1996).


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