Tag Archives: self defense.

Arias Trial- Jury Instructions 5/2

This is not a transcript, I have paraphrased.

  1. The jurors get a copy of the instructions. These will be returned and shredded at the end.2. Apply the facts. These are rules you should use. Get what actually happened from evidence in court. Verdict should not be based on sympathy or prejudice. Consider all instructions.
  2. The openings and closings are not evidence.
  3. A stipulation can be accepted/rejected.
  4. Disregard sustained/stricken testimony.
  5. The state has the burden beyond a reasonable doubt. Beyond a reasonable doubt-firmly convinced. There are few things we know with absolute certainty. If convinced of guilty find her guilty. If benefit of doubt find not guilty.
  6. Ignore statements of law enforcement if coerced.
  7. Don’t consider the punishment.
  8. Defense doesn’t have to provide any evidence.
  9. You can believe all/part or none of testimony based on what’s seen, heard, memory and quality of memory. Consider manner, motive and bias.

10. Use common sense and experience.

11. Evidence can be direct or circumstantial.

12. Expert should be judged like other witnesses.

13. Evidence of other acts are present. To establish motive plan, not character.

14. Witness if police same as any other witness.

15. Defendant’s testimony same as any other witness.

16. Don’t need motive.

17. 1st Degree:

–       Defendant caused the death.

–       Defendant intended/knew would kill another human being, reflected on that thought before killing. Reflection time may be short.

18. 2nd Degree:

–       If cannot agree on 1st.

–       Proof of intentional death.

–       Intentionally knew would injure /result in death.

–       Extreme indifference to human life- reckless.

–       Doesn’t require pre-meditation.

–       If you have a reasonable doubt about 1st vs. 2nd degree.

19. Sudden quarrel/Heat of passion

–     Adequate provocation.

–     Words aren’t adequate.

–     There must be no cooling off period.

–     Sudden quarrel-provoked.

Must find guilty of Manslaughter.

20. 1st  Degree-felony murder

–       Committed burglary.

–       Caused death in course of burglary/ or in flight.

–       Intentionally did something to culminate if the offense.

–       Entered unlawfully.

–       Did so to commit felony.

–       Objective to engage in that conduct.

–       Not necessary to be unanimous in both 1st –Pre-med and 1st –felony. If not the jurors must write the numbers on the verdict form.

21. Justified/Self Defense

–       A reasonable person would believe deadly force necessary.

–       Defendant use no more force than necessary to a reasonable person.

–       Only to protect against deadly physical force.

–       When the danger ends you stop.

–       Justified if reasonable person would believe they would have been dead.

–       Legal right to be there.

–       Not engaged in unlawful act.

–       State has burden defendant didn’t act with justification.

–       Consider-type of relationship, length, frequency (contact), and length of time.