• Last updated on November 11, 2022

The Supreme Court upheld a woman’s murder conviction, denying her claim that an all-male jury prevented her receiving a fair trial.

In the only sex discrimination case to come before the Supreme Court under Chief Justice Earl Warren, the Court unanimously upheld the conviction of Gwendolyn Hoyt for murdering her husband even though she claimed an all-male jury denied her a fair trial. According to Florida law, women were not included on jury lists unless they specifically asked to be considered. Because men were automatically included, women were a very small portion of the jury pool. Hoyt claimed that the statute prevented her from receiving equal protection of the law. In his opinion for the Court, Justice John M. Harlan IIHarlan, John M., II;Hoyt v. Florida[Hoyt v. Florida] wrote that Florida was merely trying to accommodate the community view that a woman’s place was in the home, a view unlikely to be expressed later. The Court overturned the Hoyt ruling in Taylor v. Louisiana (1975).Discrimination, sex;Hoyt v. Florida[Hoyt v. Florida]

Fourteenth Amendment

Gender issues

Jury, trial by

Jury composition and size

Taylor v. Louisiana

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