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3 Bumps

Help me understamd why it is stated this way

in the US courts how the law states a person is innocent until proven guilty,
but when jury decides, it is not stated innocent it is stated not guilty
* what is with that?


Asked by fiatpax at 8:40 AM on Jul. 12, 2011 in Politics & Current Events

Level 46 (221,572 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (12)
  • Major flaw - the Constitution doesn't actually state "innocent until proven guilty" and neither do our laws. The idea of "innocent until proven guilty" has been deduced from the 5th, 6th and 14th amendments as well as Coffin v. United States and the Supreme Court decision In re Winship.

    The word "innocent" is not actually used in any of the above cited amendments, so there is no reason for our judicial system to use it.

    Answer by miss_lisa at 9:43 AM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • Right, I never thought of it that way ... the jury should reply "Innocent of Charges" instead of "Not Guilty". HOWEVER, sometimes they don't believe in their whole heart the person is innocent ... the Guilt just couldn't be proven w/o a reasonable doubt or just not enough evidence to convict, I guess!

    Answer by isismoon3 at 8:44 AM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • As isismoon3 said, a jury only has to have reasonable doubt. They don't actually have to think the person is innocent, just have a slight doubt as to their guilt.

    Answer by DragonRiderMD at 8:52 AM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • what exactly is the difference between innocent & not guilty? If you're not guilty, aren't you innocent?

    Answer by samurai_chica at 8:47 AM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • We have a system of laws in this country,not justice yet it's called the Justice System and the Departments of Justice. I agree, however there will always be those in the issues that say the person is guilty when proved not guilty and there will be those that insist they are innocent when they have been proven guilty. More word jumbles I suppose.

    Answer by Anonymous at 8:52 AM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • if no difference, than why not state
    before verdict... not guilty until proven guilty
    or vice versa

    i think there is a tone when stated innocent verses not guilty
    when said not guilty, has a word that is negative and leaves a taste in the mouth
    if i was up on charges that i did not do
    i would rather be found innocent than not guilty

    legally same, but than why not chance the words to match = the before and after words are not the same
    is there a legal reason? is it the reasonable doubt part
    could there be a found not guilty
    plus a found innocent too

    Comment by fiatpax (original poster) at 8:52 AM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • If you are innocent, you are absolutely without fault in all aspects. You are a victim of a terrible injustice and everyone should give you their pity. But you still face all the consequences of being charged with a criminal offense. If you are not guilty, you perhaps did not do the crime, there was no crime, they arrested the wrong person, they could not prove their case, any one or combination of the above can produce the not guilty verdict. In a criminal case you are either "guilty" or "not guilty". When the jury returns with it's verdict it will be one or the other. This is not much ado about nothing. The reason of course is that the law places the burden of proving someone guilty beyond a reasonable doubt on the government. You don't have to prove your innocence. (like you could even do that). The person accused has no burden of proof at all.

    Answer by AngelicaDem at 8:53 AM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • before a trial
    why then use word of innocent at all

    Comment by fiatpax (original poster) at 8:55 AM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • before a trial
    why then use word of innocent at all
    The defense may use the term innocent because it would work to their benefit when presenting their case, and it may be used throughout the trial to help or hinder the case, BUT just because the word is used in trials doesn't mean it's an actual legal term. It's not.

    I think you're struggling to understand the difference between legal terms and legal concepts.

    Answer by miss_lisa at 9:46 AM on Jul. 12, 2011

  • You are thinking to hard. What difference does it make?

    Answer by itsmesteph11 at 9:50 AM on Jul. 12, 2011