Do Jurors sometimes rule for one side or another because of something unrelated to the case, such as a past criminal problem or a feeling that I am a bad parent?

Yes, sadly this occasionally happens. Jurors are usually instructed by the Judge not to decide a case based upon sympathy or judgmental feelings. It is improper in Georgia for Jurors to return a verdict on anything other than the evidence in the case. When a Juror feel that an injury victim does not measure up to their own personal standards of clean-living, or feels sorry for the defense, the Juror must set aside those feelings and base the size of the Verdict on the harms and losses caused to the victim. This must be true in both small and very large cases.