Denial of a New Trial Motion Based on Juror Misconduct In California

In People v. Ybarra (2008) 166 Cal.App.4th 1069, the Court of Appeal affirmed the denial of a new trial motion based on juror misconduct where a juror testified that "after initial balloting showed nine votes for conviction and three votes (including hers) for acquittal a majority juror said the minority jurors were playing 'the devil's advocate,' which to her 'was like the devil's helper' ... . She characterized the deliberations as 'intense' and the majority jurors and herself alike as 'mad.' She described the tone of the majority jurors as '"Hurry up and just say yes"' and the response of the minority jurors as acquiescence 'little by little' in the will of the majority jurors. She said she 'wanted to get out of it' but said nothing after a juror who had been a juror before told her 'it would not be easy to get out of it' and the judge 'would send her back and start deliberating more.'" (Id. at p. 1087.)