270.16 Capital cases; individual questioning for racial bias.
1. In any case in which the crime charged may be punishable by death, the court shall, upon motion of either party, permit the parties, commencing with the people, to examine the prospective jurors individually and outside the presence of the other prospective jurors regarding their qualifications to serve as jurors. Each party shall be afforded a fair opportunity to question a prospective juror as to any unexplored matter affecting his or her qualifications, including without limitation the possibility of racial bias on the part of the prospective juror, but the court shall not permit questioning that is repetitious or irrelevant, or questions as to a prospective juror's knowledge of rules of law. If necessary to prevent improper questioning as to any matter, the court shall personally examine the prospective jurors as to that matter. The scope of such examination shall be within the discretion of the court. After the parties have concluded their examinations of a prospective juror, the court may ask such further questions as it deems proper regarding the qualifications of the prospective juror.
2. The proceedings provided for in this section shall be conducted on the record; provided, however, that upon motion of either party, and for good cause shown, the court may direct that all or a portion of the record of such proceedings be sealed.
Last modified: February 3, 2019