CALCRIM No. 302. Evaluating Conflicting Evidence

Judicial Council of California Criminal Jury Instructions (2020 edition)

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302.Evaluating Conflicting Evidence
If you determine there is a conflict in the evidence, you must decide what
evidence, if any, to believe. Do not simply count the number of witnesses
who agree or disagree on a point and accept the testimony of the greater
number of witnesses. On the other hand, do not disregard the testimony
of any witness without a reason or because of prejudice or a desire to
favor one side or the other. What is important is whether the testimony
or any other evidence convinces you, not just the number of witnesses
who testify about a certain point.
New January 2006; Revised June 2007
BENCH NOTES
Instructional Duty
The court has a sua sponte duty to instruct on weighing contradictory evidence
unless corroborating evidence is required. (People v. Rincon-Pineda (1975) 14
Cal.3d 864, 884 [123 Cal.Rptr. 119, 538 P.2d 247].)
AUTHORITY
• Instructional Requirements. People v. Rincon-Pineda (1975) 14 Cal.3d 864,
884 [123 Cal.Rptr. 119, 538 P.2d 247].
• This Instruction Upheld. People v. Reyes (2007) 151 Cal.App.4th 1491, 1497
[60 Cal.Rptr.3d 777]; People v. Ibarra (2007) 156 Cal.App.4th 1174, 1190 [67
Cal.Rptr.3d 871].
SECONDARY SOURCES
3 Witkin, California Evidence (5th ed. 2012) Presentation at Trial, § 100.
5 Witkin & Epstein, California Criminal Law (4th ed. 2012) Criminal Trial, §§ 732,
734.
4 Millman, Sevilla & Tarlow, California Criminal Defense Practice, Ch. 85,
Submission to Jury and Verdict, § 85.03[2][b] (Matthew Bender).
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