DC Instruction 9.505. SELF-DEFENSE—PAST VIOLENCE BY COMPLAINANT OR DECEDENT

DC Instruction 9.505. SELF-DEFENSE—PAST VIOLENCE BY COMPLAINANT OR DECEDENT

State: District of Columbia

Criminal Jury instructions for the District of Columbia
Fifth Edition (2014)
VI. DEFENSES
Instruction 9.505. SELF-DEFENSE—PAST VIOLENCE BY COMPLAINANT OR DECEDENT

A. DEFENDANT WAS AWARE [Applicable in D.C. Superior Court and U.S. District Court]

1. Complainant’s or Decedent’s Specific Acts of Violence

You have heard evidence about past acts of violence by [name of complainant] [name of decedent] and that [name of defendant] knew about those past acts. You may consider such evidence as bearing on the reasonableness of [name of defendant]’s fear for his/her own safety.

2. Complainant’s or Decedent’s Reputation

You have heard evidence that [name of complainant] [name of decedent] had a general reputation for violence and that [name of defendant] knew about that reputation. You may consider such evidence as bearing on the reasonableness of [name of defendant]’s fear for his/her own safe

B. DECEDENT’S CHARACTER FOR VIOLENCE REGARDLESS OF DEFENDANT’S AWARENESS [Applicable Only in Homicide Cases in D.C. Superior Court]

1. Decedent’s Specific Acts of Violence

You have heard evidence about past acts of violence by [name of decedent]. You may consider such evidence in evaluating the likelihood that [name of decedent] was the aggressor.

You have heard evidence about [name of decedent]’s general reputation for violence. You may consider such evidence in evaluating the likelihood that [name of decedent] was the aggressor.

C. COMPLAINANT/DECEDENT’S CHARACTER FOR VIOLENCE REGARDLESS OF DEFENDANT’S AWARENESS [Applicable in U.S. District Court—Not Limited to Homicide Cases]

You have heard evidence about [name of complainant/decedent]’s character for violence. You may consider such evidence in evaluating the likelihood that [name of complainant or decedent] was the aggressor.

D. THREATS BY THE COMPLAINANT/DECEDENT AGAINST THE DEFENDANT [Applicable in D.C. Superior Court and U.S. District Court]

You have heard evidence that, prior to the alleged [insert offense charged], [name of complainant] [name of decedent] made a threat or threats against [name of defendant]. [Even if you find that [name of defendant] was unaware of the prior threats at the time of the alleged [insert offense charged]], you may consider such evidence as bearing on the likelihood that [name of complainant] [name of decedent] was the aggressor.

[You have also heard evidence that, at the time of the alleged [insert offense charged] [name of defendant] knew of the threat or threats against him/her. If you find that [name of defendant] knew of these prior threats by [name of complainant] [name of decedent], then you may also consider them as bearing on the reasonableness of [name of defendant]’s fear for his/her own safety.]

E. EVIDENCE OF PEACEFUL CHARACTER OF COMPLAINANT/DECEDENT [Applicable in D.C. Superior Court and U.S. District Court]

You have heard evidence about the peaceful character of [name of complainant] [name of decedent]. You may consider such evidence only as bearing on the likelihood that [name of complainant] [name of decedent] threatened [name of defendant] with imminent bodily harm, that is, on the issue of who was the aggressor. [If you find that [name of defendant] knew of [name of complainant/decedent]’s peaceful character, you may also consider such evidence as bearing on the reasonableness of [name of defendant]’s fear for his/her own safety.]

By | 2015-06-14T21:08:42+00:00 June 14th, 2015|Comments Off on DC Instruction 9.505. SELF-DEFENSE—PAST VIOLENCE BY COMPLAINANT OR DECEDENT