California Criminal Jury Instructions (CALCRIM) (2017)

1501. Arson: Great Bodily Injury

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1501.Arson: Great Bodily Injury (Pen. Code, § 451)
The defendant is charged [in Count ] with arson that caused
great bodily injury [in violation of Penal Code section 451].
To prove that the defendant is guilty of this crime, the People must
prove that:
1. The defendant set fire to or burned [or (counseled[,]/ [or]
helped[,]/ [or] caused) the burning of] (a structure/forest land/
property);
2. (He/She) acted willfully and maliciously;
AND
3. The fire caused great bodily injury to another person.
To set fire to or burn means to damage or destroy with fire either all or
part of something, no matter how small the part.
Someone commits an act willfully when he or she does it willingly or on
purpose.
Someone acts maliciously when he or she intentionally does a wrongful
act or when he or she acts with the unlawful intent to defraud, annoy,
or injure someone else.
Great bodily injury means significant or substantial physical injury. It is
an injury that is greater than minor or moderate harm.
[A structure is any (building/bridge/tunnel/power plant/commercial or
public tent).]
[Forest land means brush-covered land, cut-over land, forest, grasslands,
or woods.]
[Property means personal property or land other than forest land.]
[A person does not commit arson if the only thing burned is his or her
own personal property, unless he or she acts with the intent to defraud,
or the fire also injures someone else or someone else’s structure, forest
land, or property.]
New January 2006; Revised February 2013
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BENCH NOTES
Instructional Duty
The court has a sua sponte duty to give an instruction defining the elements of the
crime.
Related Instructions
If attempted arson is charged, do not instruct generally on attempts but give
CALCRIM No. 1520, Attempted Arson. (Pen. Code, § 455.)
AUTHORITY
• Elements. Pen. Code, § 451.
Great Bodily Injury. Pen. Code, § 12022.7(f).
• Structure, Forest Land, and Maliciously Defined. Pen. Code, § 450.
• To Burn Defined. People v. Haggerty (1873) 46 Cal. 354, 355; In re Jesse L.
(1990) 221 Cal.App.3d 161, 166–167 [270 Cal.Rptr. 389].
Secondary Sources
2 Witkin & Epstein, California Criminal Law (3d ed. 2000) Crimes Against
Property, §§ 238–242.
5 Millman, Sevilla & Tarlow, California Criminal Defense Practice, Ch. 91,
Sentencing, § 91.47[1] (Matthew Bender).
6 Millman, Sevilla & Tarlow, California Criminal Defense Practice, Ch. 143,
Crimes Against Property, § 143.11 (Matthew Bender).
LESSER INCLUDED OFFENSES
• Arson. Pen. Code, § 451.
Attempted Arson. Pen. Code, § 455.
• Unlawfully Causing a Fire. People v. Hooper (1986) 181 Cal.App.3d 1174,
1182 [226 Cal.Rptr. 810], disapproved of in People v. Barton (1995) 12 Cal.4th
186 [47 Cal.Rptr.2d 569, 906 P.2d 531] on its holding that failure to instruct on
this crime as a lesser included offense of arson was invited error because
defense counsel objected to such instruction; People v. Schwartz (1992) 2
Cal.App.4th 1319, 1324 [3 Cal.Rptr.2d 816].
RELATED ISSUES
See the Related Issues section under CALCRIM No. 1515, Arson.
ARSON CALCRIM No. 1501
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