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challenge

n. the right of each attorney in a jury trial to request that a juror be excused. There may be a "challenge for cause" on the basis the juror had admitted prejudice or shows some obvious conflict of interest (e.g. the juror used to work for the defendant or was once charged with the same type of crime) which the judge must resolve. If the juror is excused (removed) "for cause," then the challenge does not count against the limited number of challenges allowed each side. More common is the "peremptory challenge," which is a request that a juror be excused without stating a reason. An attorney might say: "Juror number eight may be excused." Only six or eight peremptory challenges are normally allowed each side. Systematic peremptory challenges of all blacks or all women may be examples and proof that a defendant has been deprived of a jury of his/her peers and result in an appeal based on lack of due process.

See also: peremptory challenge 

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The People's Law Dictionary by Gerald and Kathleen Hill Publisher Fine Communications