In the book does it ever say that Tom Robinson was found guilty? If so, why? Can you please provide a page number? I have to cite it, but I cant find it in the book.

Expert Answers

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In the book, Scout explains that everyone returned to the courthouse and the jury filed in slowly.  She says that she noticed something that only an attorney's child would notice; she noticed that none of the jurors looked at Tom Robinson when they returned to their chairs.  She noted that jurors never look at the defendant they are about to convict.  Judge Taylor then polls the jury. That means that he asks each individual juror what their vote would be--guilty or not guilty. On page 211, it says,

"I shut my eyes.  Judge Taylor was polling the jury: ' Guilty...guilty...guilty...guilty'  I peeked at Jem; his hands were white from gripping the balcony rail, and his shoulders jerked as if each 'guilty' was a separate stab between them."

Tom Robinson was found guilty of raping Mayella Ewell.  For that he was sentenced to death. Later when Jem is talking to Atticus and says that he didn't think Tom should have gotten the death penalty, Atticus tells him,

"Tom Robinson's a colored man, Jem. No jury in this part of the world's going to say, 'We think you're guilty, but not very,' on a charge like that. It was either a straight acquittal or nothing." (pg 219)

The quotes I have noted are from my edition of the book.  However they should be in close proximity to the pages given.


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