How do Jurors Construe Autism at Trial?

Originally Published on September 18th, 2023 at 08:00 am
Table of Contents
Implications for Mitigation


Being in front of a jury can bring difficulties different from neurotypical defendants. Clients with Autism at trial should be handled differently.


It is well known that most criminal cases plead out and do not go to trial. However, this is not the case for all criminal matters. In any trial, the jury plays a key role in the outcome.

An Article Looking at Autism at Trial

In a 2021 article in the University of Pittsburgh Law Review, Perlin and Cucolo lay out the ways in which a jury may misconstrue an autistic client. They evaluate how this can affect the case and how a trial attorney can help mitigate these issues.

Understanding ASD

One of the first statements this article makes:

In order for an attorney to meet the effectiveness of counsel standard, they must have some familiarity with the clinical diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and how society perceives these individuals.

In terms of the voir dire process, one of the key things to explore is

Mitigation Aide is full of useful content for criminal defense, attorneys, public defenders, forensic mental health professionals, sentence mitigation experts, and researchers!

Don't miss out, upgrade your membership today! There's a FREE 30-day trial waiting for you!

Gavel by Bill Oxford on Unsplash

Are you looking for more assistance with your sentence mitigation reports? Contact Dr. Jennifer Weeks, a recognized expert witness and forensic psychologist.

Related Research