CALCRIM No. 316. Additional Instructions on Witness Credibility - Other Conduct

Judicial Council of California Criminal Jury Instructions (2020 edition)

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316.Additional Instructions on Witness Credibility - Other
Conduct
<Alternative A - felony conviction>
[If you find that a witness has been convicted of a felony, you may
consider that fact [only] in evaluating the credibility of the witness’s
testimony. The fact of a conviction does not necessarily destroy or impair
a witness’s credibility. It is up to you to decide the weight of that fact
and whether that fact makes the witness less believable.]
<Alternative B - prior criminal conduct with or without conviction>
[If you find that a witness has committed a crime or other misconduct,
you may consider that fact [only] in evaluating the credibility of the
witness’s testimony. The fact that a witness may have committed a crime
or other misconduct does not necessarily destroy or impair a witness’s
credibility. It is up to you to decide the weight of that fact and whether
that fact makes the witness less believable.]
New January 2006
BENCH NOTES
Instructional Duty
There is no sua sponte duty to give this instruction; however, the instruction must
be given on request. (People v. Kendrick (1989) 211 Cal.App.3d 1273, 1278 [260
Cal.Rptr. 27]; People v. Hernandez (2004) 33 Cal.4th 1040, 1051-1052 [16
Cal.Rptr.3d 880, 94 P.3d 1080] [overruling People v. Mayfield (1972) 23 Cal.App.3d
236 [100 Cal.Rptr. 104], which had found a sua sponte duty to give limiting
instruction on felony conviction admitted for impeachment].)
If a felony conviction or other misconduct has been admitted only on the issue of
credibility, give the bracketed word “only.”
Do not give this instruction if a conviction also has been admitted to prove an
element of a charged offense. (People v. Dewberry (1959) 51 Cal.2d 548, 553-554
[334 P.2d 852].)
It is unclear whether this instruction is appropriate if the evidence also has been
admitted for a purpose other than to prove an element of the offense (as discussed
above). For example, the evidence may have been admitted under Evidence Code
section 1108. In such cases, if the court does give this instruction, the court may
omit the bracketed “only.”
AUTHORITY
• Limiting Instruction Must Be Given on Request. People v. Kendrick (1989) 211
Cal.App.3d 1273, 1278 [260 Cal.Rptr. 27]; People v. Hernandez (2004) 33
86
Cal.4th 1040, 1051-1052 [16 Cal.Rptr.3d 880, 94 P.3d 1080].
• Felony Conviction Admissible for Impeachment. Evid. Code, § 788.
• Standard for Admitting Felony Conviction. People v. Castro (1985) 38 Cal.3d
301, 306-319 [211 Cal.Rptr. 719, 696 P.2d 111]; People v. Beagle (1972) 6
Cal.3d 441, 451-452 [99 Cal.Rptr. 313, 492 P.2d 1].
• Misdemeanor Conduct Admissible for Impeachment. People v. Wheeler (1992)
4 Cal.4th 284, 295-296 [14 Cal.Rptr.2d 418, 841 P.2d 938].
• Record Must Demonstrate Court Conducted Evid. Code, § 352
Weighing. People v. Navarez (1985) 169 Cal.App.3d 936, 950 [215 Cal.Rptr.
519].
• Modifications to this Instruction Created Error. People v. Gray (2007) 158
Cal.App.4th 635, 640-641 [69 Cal.Rptr.3d 876].
SECONDARY SOURCES
1 Witkin, California Evidence (5th ed. 2012) Presentation at Trial, §§ 304-326.
4 Millman, Sevilla & Tarlow, California Criminal Defense Practice, Ch. 82,
Witnesses, § 82.22[3][e], Ch. 85, Submission to Jury and Verdict, §§ 85.02[2][b],
85.03[2][b] (Matthew Bender).
5 Millman, Sevilla & Tarlow, California Criminal Defense Practice, Ch. 105,
Executive Clemency, § 105.04[3] (Matthew Bender).
EVIDENCE CALCRIM No. 316
87

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