- When a jury delivers a general verdict, it only reports whether jurors found the accused guilty or not guilty of each charge (in criminal court) or which party is liable and the amount of damages (in civil court) without reporting specific findings on individual issues of fact.
Contrast this with a special verdict.
Grand Jury, Grand Juror
- A grand jury is a jury composed of citizens tasked with investigating alleged criminal conduct and deciding whether or not criminal accusations warrant a trial while protecting the innocent from unjust accusation and harassment by the government. They do not decide whether the accused is guilty or not guilty.
Consequently, standards for a grand jury to indict are less stringent than for a petit jury (or trial jury) to convict. The standard of proof for a grand jury is lower than for a petit jury, and unanimity is not required for grand juries to indict even though petit juries must almost always be unanimous in order to convict.
Members of a grand jury are known as grand jurors. Grand juries are typically composed of more jurors than petit juries, usually of about 16 to 23 members.
Contrast this with a petit jury.