Hernandez vs. Texas
The idea of a “jury of your peers” is a concept not fully realized until 1954. The trial of Pete Hernandez in Jackson County, Texas. Four years earlier the farm worker was found guilty of murder. The only problem – not a single juror was a Mexican American peer. In fact Mexican Americans were excluded from serving on juries in the county for over 25 years. The Supreme Court of the United States determined that Hernandez’s 14th Amendment rights (equal protection under the law) were violated. He was subsequently granted a second trial. The ruling determined that all minority groups were entitled to such protection and fair treatment.