This is a partial transcript of "The Big Story With John Gibson," Nov. 11, 2004, that has been edited for clarity.
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JOHN GIBSON, HOST: Murder one: Scott Peterson (search) guilty of killing his pregnant wife, Laci, then dumping her body in the San Francisco bay. The newly formed jury reaching its verdict in just a matter of hours. Tears inside the courtroom, cheers from the crowd outside…
Mickey Sherman (search), Judge Napolitano, sitting next to me, both reacting. Mickey, societal pressure: how can I be the juror that goes home and faces my neighbors and say I let the guy go?
MICKEY SHERMAN, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: The last I checked that isn't in the Constitution. You're supposed to convict people based upon the evidence that's brought to you in that courtroom.
GIBSON: But you think that dynamic was working?
SHERMAN: Absolutely. This collective guilt that you're going to get criticized or looked awkward at at the country club, bowling alley, wrestling match or trailer park, that should not be a part of this.
GIBSON: Trailer park?
SHERMAN: Whatever, I'm trying to cover all the bases, John.
GIBSON: Judge Napolitano...
NAPOLITANO: As only Mickey...
NAPOLITANO: Yes, because even though the jury is the conscience of the community, they are not answerable to the community. They're answerable to themselves and to the court... this feeling will permeate its way into the jury. It's not supposed to. They are warned and challenged almost every day by the judge, "Make your decision just on the basis of the evidence that's in this courtroom and no prejudice, no sympathy, no emotion, nobody else's opinion... "
GIBSON: Lis, you were out there watching it. Is there any chance at all, that that jury could have been hermetically sealed from the "Find Scott Guilty" cheerleaders that were in front of the courthouse every day?
LIS WIEHL, FNC LEGAL ANALYST: No, that's true. And that probably played maybe some part in this.
But where you say emotion, I would also say common sense and the ability to put fact A with fact B with fact C to reach a conclusion that Scott Peterson did this.
I don't think — and I got to tell you from watching these folks over the last five months that they would have said, "We don't like Scott Peterson. He's a cad; they can't find anyone else who did this. And we don't want to go home to our grocery stores and our lines and be the one that let him off and say, 'OK, well then he's guilty of first degree murder.'" I just don't buy that.
I think that they put together the evidence and the time that they spent there in the courtroom; put all of that together and said, "There is no other reasonable explanation" unto which they brought their common sense, John.
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