Tom Robinson's trialWhat risk did Atticus take in selecting the jury members? Who did Bob Ewell terrorize after the trial?

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Susan Hurn eNotes educator| Certified Educator

After the trial, Jem is astounded to find out that Atticus had put one of the Cunninghams on the jury, not Walter's father, but one of the same family that made up part of the lynch mob that came to the jail. He put Cunningham on the jury, in spite of what had happened at the jail, because he understood the Cunninghams in general:

He said . . . once you earned their respect they were for you tooth and nail. Atticus said he had a feeling, nothing more than a suspicion, that they left the jail that night with considerable respect for the Finches. Then too, he said, it took a thunderbolt plus another Cunningham to make one of them change his mind. "If we'd had two of that crowd, we'd've had a hung jury."

 As it turned out, Cunningham was the one juror who voted for Tom, which kept the jury out for a very long time.

After the trial, Bob Ewell was angry and humiliated. He broke into Judge Taylor's house, thinking the Judge wasn't home, and he harassed Helen Robinson on her way to work, until Link Dees made him stop. Finally, he attacked Jem and Scout on their way home from the school pageant.

writergal06 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The majority, if not all, of the townspeople had already decided that Tom Robinson was guilty due to their prejudices. Atticus was basically always fighting a losing battle.

After the trial, Bob Ewell mostly went after Atticus's family. Even though he had won the case, everyone knew that he was truly guilty of beating his daughter and that Tom Robinson was innocent. Because Atticus had destroyed what little sympathy people had for him, Bob threatened Atticus's family.

ask996 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Atticus risked not only the physical safety and security of his family but their economic safety and security. He knew it was a losing battle, and I’m sure he new the great risks, but the risks would have been far greater if he had done nothing even though he knew it was a losing battle.

zumba96 | Student

Atticus knew he would lose but he did not care because he wanted to make sure that justice was given. Each of his statements ended up proving how Bob was at fault but because of the racial prejudices already in their mind, the jury caused an innocent man's death. However, one person stood up for Atticus and this signified a new change in the town. 

epollock | Student

Atticus risked the safety of his family and Bob terrorized Atticus' family.

dynamation | Student

THEY MAY BETRAY HIS TRUST. SOME OF THEM MIGHT BE FOLLOWING THE WHITES.

dynamation | Student

BOB EWELL FELT ASHAMED THAT PEOPLE KNEW HE ABUSED HER DAUGHTER AND WANTED REVENGE AGAINST ATTICUS FOR CAUSING ALL THESE MATTERS

dynamation | Student

THEY MAY BETRAY HIS TRUST. SOME OF THEM MIGHT BE FOLLOWING THE WHITES.

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To Kill a Mockingbird

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