New Mexico Supreme Court ruling: Non-English speakers have right to serve as jurors
Santa Fe, NM (KTSM) — The New Mexico Supreme Court is sending a message to trial courts and lawyers across the state: Non-english speaking citizens have a right to serve on juries. The court issued the admonition in a ruling that upholds an Albquerque man's murder conviction after he beat his girlfriend to death. Michael Samora's appeal argued his conviction should be reversed because the court excused a spanish speaking prospective juror who had trouble speaking English. The Supreme Court says while it agrees with the argument, the defense needed to object during trial.