For the answer to this question we have to have several things assumed. I know you have been told not to “assume” anything but we must. You must assume that you were arrested and charged with a crime. Maybe a drug crime. I have to assume you discussed settling the case with the District Attorney and you and the DA could not reach an agreement. I assume you set the case for trial. You came to court, selected a jury, the state put on proof and you put on proof or decided not to put on proof. After all this you have a jury trial. So the question becomes, What are jury instructions?
Jury instructions are the directions given to jurors telling them how to reach a decision. The instructions do not tell them what decisions to make only how to get there. Think about jury instructions like directions to my office. How do I get to Jefre S. Goldtrap, Attorney office? You travel on the interstate, exit at Shelby Avenue and turn towards downtown. Turn right on Hermitage or First Avenue and cross Broadway. Turn left at the traffic light of Church Street and First Avenue then turn right on Third Avenue. Jefre S. Goldtrap, Attorney is at 208 Third Avenue North. If you decide to make a left on First Avenue then you will not reach my office. If you go straight on Korean Veterans Boulevard you will not reach my office. If you follow the instructions you will reach my office. Sounds silly right?
Jury instructions sound more complicated and picky that traffic directions. They should sound complicated; the freedom of your son or daughter depends on them. Jury instructions say; if you find A B and C then you must find a certain crime occurred. If you find A and B but not C occurred then you must find a certain crime did not occur but another crime could have occurred. If you find A but not B and C then you must find that a crime has not occurred. Jury instructions use many more words and comments but this is basically how they work.
Why are jury instructions so important? Jury service is important. In a drug case a jury can decide whether you are labeled a convicted felon for the rest of your life. A jury can make a decision that a judge will use to send you to the state prison. Most jurors take their job very seriously and they do a good job. Jury instructions are the words they use to help them decide. Jury instructions are very important!
Jury instructions are some of the items your lawyer will review when defending you from the charges brought by the DA. You need a good lawyer! You need me! Call me NOW at 615-254-1471. Need to send me a text? Text to 615-516-3812.
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