If the prosecution’s theory is that the defendant aided and abetted or conspired to
commit the felony, select one or both of these options in element 1 and the
corresponding intent requirements in element 2. In addition, in the paragraph that
begins with “To decide whether,” select “the perpetrator” in the ﬁrst sentence. Give
the second and/or third bracketed sentences. Give all appropriate instructions on
any underlying felonies and on aiding and abetting and/or conspiracy with this
instruction. The court may need to modify the ﬁrst sentence of the instruction on
an underlying felony if the defendant is not separately charged with that offense.
The court may also need to modify the instruction to state “the perpetrator
committed,” rather than “the defendant,” in the instructions on the underlying
If the defendant was a nonkiller who ﬂed, leaving behind an accomplice who
killed, see People v. Cavitt (2004) 33 Cal.4th 187, 206, fn. 7 [14 Cal.Rtpr.3d 281,
91 P.3d 222] [continuous transaction] and the discussion of Cavitt in People v.
Wilkins (2013) 56 Cal.4th 333, 344 [153 Cal.Rptr.3d 519, 295 P.3d 903].
If there is evidence that the defendant did not form the intent to commit the felony
until after the homicide, or did not join the conspiracy or aid and abet the felony
until after the homicide, the defendant is entitled on request to an instruction
pinpointing this issue. (People v. Hudson (1955) 45 Cal.2d 121, 124–127 [287 P.2d
497]; People v. Silva (2001) 25 Cal.4th 345, 371 [106 Cal.Rptr.2d 93, 21 P.3d
769].) Give the bracketed sentence that begins with “The defendant must have
(intended to commit.” For an instruction specially tailored to robbery-murder cases,
see People v. Turner (1990) 50 Cal.3d 668, 691 [268 Cal.Rptr. 706, 789 P.2d 887].
Give the bracketed sentence that begins with “It is not required that the person die
immediately” on request if relevant based on the evidence.
The felony-murder rule does not require that the person killed be the victim of the
underlying felony. (People v. Johnson (1972) 28 Cal.App.3d 653, 658 [104
Cal.Rptr. 807] [accomplice]; People v. Welch (1972) 8 Cal.3d 106, 117–119 [104
Cal.Rptr. 217, 501 P.2d 225] [innocent bystander]; People v. Salas (1972) 7 Cal.3d
812, 823 [103 Cal.Rptr. 431, 500 P.2d 7] [police officer].) Give the bracketed
sentence that begins with “It is not required that the person killed be” on request.
Give the last bracketed sentence, stating that the defendant need not be present, on
If the prosecutor is proceeding under both malice and felony-murder theories, give
CALCRIM No. 548, Murder: Alternative Theories. If the prosecutor is relying only
on a theory of felony murder, no instruction on malice should be given. (See
People v. Cain (1995) 10 Cal.4th 1, 35–37 [40 Cal.Rptr.2d 481, 892 P.2d 1224]
[error to instruct on malice when felony murder only theory].)
There is no sua sponte duty to clarify the logical nexus between the felony and the
homicidal act. If an issue about the logical nexus requirement arises, the court may
give the following language:
There must be a logical connection between the cause of death and the
HOMICIDE CALCRIM No. 540B