United States District Court, E.D. California
jury instructions attached hereto were read to the jury in
OF THE JURY
You now are the jury in this case, and I want to take a few
minutes to tell you something about your duties as jurors and
to give you some preliminary instructions. At the end of the
trial I will give you more detailed instructions that will
control your deliberations. When you deliberate, it will be
your duty to weigh and to evaluate all the evidence received
in the case and, in that process, to decide the facts. To the
facts as you find them, you will apply the law as I give it
to you, whether you agree with the law or not. You must
decide the case solely on the evidence and the law before you
and must not be influenced by any personal likes or dislikes,
opinions, prejudices, or sympathy. Please do not take
anything I may say or do during the trial as indicating what
I think of the evidence or what your verdict should be-that
is entirely up to you.
CHARGE - PRESUMPTION OF INNOCENCE
a criminal case brought by the United States government. The
government charges the defendant with receipt or distribution
of material involving the sexual exploitation of a minor. The
charges against the defendant are contained in the
indictment. The indictment simply describes the charges the
government brings against the defendant. The indictment is
not evidence and does not prove anything.
defendant has pleaded not guilty to the charges and is
presumed innocent unless and until the government proves the
defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. In addition, the
defendant has the right to remain silent and never has to
prove innocence or to present any evidence.
defendant has the right to be represented by an attorney in
this trial, as do all criminal defendants in this country.
lie has decided instead to exercise his constitutional right
to act as his own attorney in this case. Do not allow that
decision to affect your verdict. The court applies the rules
of evidence and procedure to a self-represented defendant.
evidence you are to consider in deciding what the facts are
(1) the sworn testimony of any witness; and
(2) the exhibits which are received in evidence; and
(3) any facts to which the parties agree.
following things are not evidence, and you must not consider
them as evidence in deciding the facts of this case:
(1) statements and arguments of the attorneys;
(2) questions and objections of the attorneys;
(3) testimony that I instruct you to disregard; and
(4) anything you may see or hear when the court is not in
session even if what you see or hear is done or said by one
of the parties or by one of the witnesses.
AND CIRCUMSTANTIAL EVIDENCE
may be direct or circumstantial. Direct evidence is direct
proof of a fact, such as testimony by a witness about what
that witness personally saw or heard or did. Circumstantial
evidence is indirect evidence, that is, it is proof of one or
more facts from which one can find another fact.
to consider both direct and circumstantial evidence. Either
can be used to prove any fact. The law makes no distinction
between the weight to be given to either direct or
circumstantial evidence. It is for you to decide how much
weight to give to any evidence.
are rules of evidence that control what can be received in
evidence. When a lawyer or party asks a question or offers an
exhibit in evidence and a lawyer or party on the other side
thinks that it is not permitted by the rules of evidence,
that lawyer may object. If I overrule the objection, the
question may be answered or the exhibit received. If I
sustain the objection, the question cannot be answered, or
the exhibit cannot be received. Whenever I sustain an
objection to a question, you must ignore the question and
must not guess what the answer would have been.
I may order that evidence be stricken from the record and
that you disregard or ignore the evidence. That means that
when you are deciding the case, you must not consider the
evidence that I told you to disregard.
deciding the facts in this case, you may have to decide which
testimony to believe and which testimony not to believe. You
may believe everything a witness says, or part of it, or none
considering the testimony of any witness, you may take into
(1) The witness's opportunity and ability to see or hear
or know the things testified to;
(2) The witness's memory;
(3) The witness's manner while testifying;
(4) The witness's interest in the outcome of the case, if
(5) The witness's bias or prejudice, if any;
(6) Whether other evidence contradicted the witness's
(7) The reasonableness of the witness's testimony in
light of all the evidence; and
(8) Any other factors that bear on believability.
weight of the evidence as to a fact does not necessarily
depend on the number of witnesses who testify about it. What
is important is how believable the witnesses were, and how
much weight you think their testimony deserves.
CONFERENCES AND RECESSES
time to time during the trial, it may become necessary for me
to take up legal matters with the attorneys privately, either
by having a conference at the bench or, when necessary, by
calling a recess. Please understand that while you are
waiting, we are working. The purpose of these conferences is
not to keep relevant information from you, but to decide how
certain evidence is to be treated under the rules of evidence
and to avoid confusion and error.
do what we can to keep the number and length of these
conferences to a minimum. I may not always grant an
attorney's request for a conference. Do not consider my
granting or denying a request for a conference as any
indication of my opinion of the case or what your verdict