Are known atheists more likely to be convicted of violent crimes?

This question came to me after watching a forensics show recently. This lady in Atlanta had been killed and the DA had a pretty strong case against her husband. One of the husband's good friends (whom he owed money to) was also killed. The husband said the friend had came into his house (thinking it empty) to rob him for the debt and surprised the wife, so he killed her, then husband came in and killed friend in self defense. Both men were bookies, by the way.

One of the things introduced in the trial by the prosecution was the idea that the couple was having big problems, including their difference of religion. She was a Christian with "very strong feelings" about her spirituality. He was atheist. Again, the prosecution already had a good case without this tidbit.

What stood out to me was the jury deliberation time. They came back with a guilty in 45 minutes. That's awful damn fast. Do you think the jury just thought "sure he's guilty because atheists have no morals"? Seemed like it was at least a contributing factor.

So, if one of us was on trial for murder or some other violent crime, do you think it would sway a jury to "guilty" due to our lack of religion?

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@Micael Penn, thanks for the XBMC and Koni information. 

Sorry Michael, I misspelled your name and didn't catch it. 

You are very welcome, only now I find I was in error. The next edition of the program will be called "kodi" and not "koni." Apparently this is a legal issue but the program will continue to go on. The newer issues of it will have this new name, kodi. Find out how t installl it in You Tube. XBMC same now as kodi.

It was an episode of 'Forensic Files' on HLN. It's a 30 minute show that comes on after their talk shows. Don't know if it's on youtube.

Do you remember what day it was aired, title of episode, keywords in summary?

If one can't watch it, it's not possible to know if one would agree with your idea that there was anti-atheist prejudice in the verdict.

If the jurors all agree when they start deliberations, there's not much for them to deliberate, and they would give the verdict quickly. 

I saw that show. Although I missed the part about the husband being atheist. I found the evidence against the husband to be overwhelming in favor of guilty.
To the original question ; could a verdict turn on a person being atheist l believe it would.
Everyone thinks if we're godless we are capable of anything.

What was the name of the show???  Is it on Youtube?

Luara, l believe l saw it on Dateline. It may havebbeen Forensic Files.

Yeah, KH, the guy looked guilty as all-get-out. But the fact that the religious difference was brought up in the trial raised the question with me. Seems they were piling on, but if a case was hinged on reasonable doubt, known atheism could be a tipping point. That verdict was blazing fast.

You're right about that roland. Religion, or lack of, had nothing to do with him being a murdering sob.

The first article I found comparing religious and non-religious and violence is not a statistical analysis, however, it does give rationale for violence. 

Religion, Violence, Crime and Mass Suicide

"According to statistics from the Federal Bureau of Prisons, Christians make up almost 80 percent of the prison population. Atheists make up about 0.2 percent. [...] It is safe to conclude that the godless do not fill prisons. Published studies do indicate that a child's risk of sexual abuse by a family member increases as the family's religious denomination becomes more conservative, that is, when the teachings of scriptures and other doctrines are taken more literally. Similarly, the probability of wife abuse increases with the rigidity of a church's teachings pertaining to gender roles and hierarchy. [...] Even observers from the Christian side have expressed dismay that the current dominance of evangelical Christianity in America has not translated into a strengthening of the nation's moral character or the characters of evangelical Christians themselves. In an article in Christianity Today, theologian Ronald Sider lamented [...]:

"The findings in numerous national polls conducted by highly respected pollsters like The Gallup Organization and The Barna Group are simply shocking. 'Gallup and Barna,' laments evangelical theologian Michael Horton, 'hand us survey after survey demonstrating that evangelical Christians are as likely to embrace lifestyles every bit as hedonistic, materialistic, self-centered, and sexually immoral as the world in general.' "

The entire article is well worth the read. 

Joan this is similar to data I have seen in the past.  Either atheists commit fewer crimes per capita, or conviction rare is higher, which doesn't make sense, or people convert to religion in prison.

I don't think there is effective bias against atheists as far as incarceration is concerned.

Now when it comes to race, that's another matter.  Specifically, African American men.  Every time I turn around there's another police or judicial atrocity committed against black men.  Man in Minnesota arrested and tazed in front of his kids for sitting on a bench whil....   It's not the atheists who have to worry.


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