Tennessee Pattern Instructions (T.P.I).  Section 40.00. Defense


Included in the defendant’s plea of not guilty is [his] [her] plea of necessity as a defense.

It is a defense to the offense [charged] [included] that:

(1)  the defendant reasonably believed the conduct was immediately necessary to avoid imminent harm; and

(2)  the desirability and urgency of avoiding the harm clearly outweighed, according to ordinary standards of reasonableness, the harm sought to be prevented by the law proscribing the conduct.

“Imminent” means near at hand; on the point of happening.

“Ordinary standards of reasonableness” means the care an ordinary, reasonable, prudent person would have taken under same or similar circumstances.

If evidence is introduced supporting the defense of necessity, the burden is on the state to prove beyond a reasonable doubt the defendant did not act out of necessity.

If from all the facts and circumstances you find the defendant acted out of necessity, or if you have a reasonable doubt whether [he] [she] acted out of necessity, then you must find the defendant not guilty.