Jury selection refers to a procedure employed to choose the people from among the community using a reasonably random method to serve on a trial jury. The policy of the state is that that all persons selected for jury service is selected at random from a fair cross section of the population of the area served by the court. A citizen shall not be excluded from jury service in this state because of race, color, religion, sex, national origin or economic status.
As a part of the procedure during jury selection, either the Court shall permit the parties or their attorneys to conduct the examination of prospective jurors or itself conduct the examination[i]. In the latter event, the court shall permit the parties or their attorneys to supplement the examination by such further inquiry as it deems proper.
Where as many as nine out of twelve jurors in a civil case agree upon a verdict, the verdict shall be returned as the verdict of such jury. The parties may, however, stipulate that a jury shall consist of any number less than twelve and that a verdict or finding of a stated majority thereof shall be taken as the verdict or finding of the jury.
The court may direct that not more than two jurors in addition to the regular jury be called and empanelled to sit as alternate jurors. Alternate jurors shall be drawn in the same manner, shall have the qualifications, shall take the same oath, and shall have the same functions, powers, facilities, and privileges as the regular jurors[ii].
[i] A.C.A. § 16-33-101 (2009)
[ii] A.C.A. § 16-30-102 (2009)