CALCRIM No. 1192. Testimony on Rape Trauma Syndrome

Judicial Council of California Criminal Jury Instructions (2023 edition)

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1192.Testimony on Rape Trauma Syndrome
You have heard testimony from <insert name of expert>
regarding rape trauma syndrome.
Rape trauma syndrome relates to a pattern of behavior that may be
present in rape cases. Testimony as to the trauma syndrome is offered
only to explain certain behavior of an alleged victim of rape.
s <insert name of expert> testimony about rape trauma
syndrome is not evidence that the defendant committed any of the
crimes charged against (him/her) [or any conduct or crime[s] with which
(he/she) was not charged]. You may consider this evidence only in
deciding whether or not s <insert name of alleged rape
victim> conduct was consistent with the conduct of someone who has
been raped, and in evaluating the believability of the alleged victim.
New January 2006; Revised April 2020, September 2022
Instructional Duty
The court has a sua sponte duty to give this instruction if an expert testifies on rape
trauma syndrome. (See People v. Housley (1992) 6 Cal.App.4th 947, 958-959 [8
Cal.Rptr.2d 431] [sua sponte duty in context of child sexual abuse accommodation
syndrome (CSAAS)]; CJER Mandatory Criminal Jury Instructions Handbook (CJER
2019) Sua Sponte Instructions, § 2.163; but see People v. Sanchez (1989) 208
Cal.App.3d 721, 736 [256 Cal.Rptr. 446] [instruction on CSAAS only required on
Related Instructions
If this instruction is given, also give CALCRIM No. 303, Limited Purpose Evidence
in General, and CALCRIM No. 332, Expert Witness Testimony.
Rebut Inference That Victim’s Conduct Inconsistent With Claim of Rape. People
v. Bledsoe (1984) 36 Cal.3d 236, 247-248 [203 Cal.Rptr. 450, 681 P.2d 291].
Syndrome Evidence Not Admissible to Prove Rape Occurred. People v. Bledsoe,
supra, 36 Cal.3d at p. 251.
It is unnecessary and potentially misleading to instruct that the expert testimony
assumes that a rape has in fact occurred. (See People v. Gilbert (1992) 5
Cal.App.4th 1372, 1387 [7 Cal.Rptr.2d 660] [in context of child molestation].)
1 Witkin, California Evidence (5th ed. 2012) Opinion Evidence, § 53.
3 Millman, Sevilla & Tarlow, California Criminal Defense Practice, Ch. 71,
Scientific and Expert Evidence, § 71.04[1][d][v][B] (Matthew Bender).
6 Millman, Sevilla & Tarlow, California Criminal Defense Practice, Ch. 142, Crimes
Against the Person, § 142.23[3][d] (Matthew Bender).
Couzens & Bigelow, Sex Crimes: California Law and Procedure § 12:7 (The Rutter

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