Sample Jury Instructions 2008

Sample Jury Instructions 2008 - Model Jury Instructions for...

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1 Model Jury Instructions for the United States District Courts within the Third Circuit 3.16 Election of Foreperson; Unanimous Verdict; Do Not Consider Punishment; Duty to Deliberate; Communication with Court That concludes my instructions explaining the law regarding the testimony and other evidence, and the offenses charged. Now let me explain some things about your deliberations in the jury room, and your possible verdicts. First: The first thing that you should do in the jury room is choose someone to be your foreperson. This person will speak for the jury here in court. He or she will also preside over your discussions. However, the views and vote of the foreperson are entitled to no greater weight than those of any other juror. Second: I want to remind you that your verdict, whether it is guilty or not guilty, must be unanimous. To find (name of defendant) guilty of an offense, every one of you must agree that the government has overcome the presumption of innocence with evidence that proves each element of that offense beyond a reasonable doubt. To find (name) not guilty, every one of you must agree that the government has failed to convince you beyond a reasonable doubt. Third: If you decide that the government has proved (name) guilty, then it will be my responsibility to decide what the appropriate punishment should be. You should never consider the possible punishment in reaching your verdict. Fourth: As I have said before, your verdict must be based only on the evidence received in this case and the law I have given to you. You should not take anything I may have said or done during trial as indicating what I think of the evidence or what I think your verdict should be. What the verdict should be is the exclusive responsibility of the jury. Fifth: Now that all the evidence is in, the arguments are completed, and once I have finished these instructions, you are free to talk about the case in the jury room. In fact, it is your duty to talk with each other about the evidence, and to make every reasonable effort you can to reach unanimous agreement. Talk with each other, listen carefully and respectfully to each other's views, and keep an open mind as you listen to what your fellow jurors have to say. Do not hesitate to change your mind if you are convinced that other jurors are right and that your original position was wrong. But do not ever change your mind just because other jurors see things differently, or just to get the case over with. In the end, your vote must be exactly that--your own vote. It is important for you to reach unanimous agreement, but only if you can do so honestly and in good conscience. Listen carefully to what the other jurors have to say, and then decide for yourself if the
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2 government has proved the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. No one will be allowed to hear your discussions in the jury room, and no record will
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This note was uploaded on 10/22/2008 for the course LAW 101 taught by Professor Shellenberger during the Fall '08 term at Temple.

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Sample Jury Instructions 2008 - Model Jury Instructions for...

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