Bizarre new 'murder trial' experiment comes to Milton Keynes
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a juror in a murder trial?
A live event in Milton Keynes will offer people the chance to do just that, in what's been dubbed a "national social experiment" by the organisers.
After a two-course dinner, tables of 12 'jurors' will watch as actors play out a mocked-up murder trial and then come to their verdicts.
The experiment will "test the robustness of the UK jury system by testing the outcome at 40 replicated experiments all over the country".
Once the run of events across the UK is over, the outcome of all the trials will be published as a poll to show how each jury voted on the same case.
Executive producer Samuel Piri, who secured funding for his company, the ITAE Group, on Dragons Den, said: "There’s a real current appetite for crime and justice programmes at the moment and we wanted to test how fit for purpose our justice system is in this modern age.
"The fascinating thing about this experiment is that the same trial and evidence could produce different verdicts in different locations."
The scenario is the trial of Frank Lane, a man accused of murdering his wife Alison Lane on March 25, 2017.
To quality assure the experiment the production has been managed by an in-house legal team, including criminal barristers and the lawyer behind the production of the Channel 4 series The Trial - A Murder In The Family, to accurately reflect what a jury is privy to in a real court case.
The trial will see the prosecution and defence call witnesses to the stand to give evidence, which will be cross-examined by the defence.
Once finished, attendees will deliberate at their tables before giving their verdict.
Alex Khan, who attended a screening event, said: "The experience was incredible, there were people who had made up their minds before they had even sat down.
"The whole thing is a mind game, a man’s liberty is at stake here and the weight of responsibility is huge.
"I began to question my own decisions."
The Milton Keynes event is on October 10. Tickets cost £65.00 and include a two course meal before the trial begins. Jurors can sign up to take part at www.themurdertriallive.co.uk