#### Convicting the Innocent: The Inferiority of Unanimous Jury
Verdicts

by

Timothy Feddersen and Wolfgang Pesendorfer

**Abstract**

It is often suggested that requiring juries to reach a unanimous verdict
reduces the probability of convicting an innocent defendant while increasing
the probability of acquitting a guilty defendant. We construct a model that
demonstrates how strategic voting by jurors undermines this basic intuition.
We show that unanimity rule may lead to high probabilities of *both *kinds
of errors and that the probability of convicting an innocent may actually
increase with the size of the jury. Finally, we demonstrate that a wide variety
of voting rules, including simple majority rule, lead to much lower probabilities
of both kinds of errors.