CALCRIM No. 916. Assault by Conditional Threat
Judicial Council of California Criminal Jury Instructions (2023 edition)Download PDF
916.Assault by Conditional Threat
The defendant is charged [in Count ] with assault committed by a
conditional threat to use force.
To prove that the defendant is guilty of this crime, the People must
1. The defendant willfully threatened to use force on another person
unless that person immediately did an act that the defendant
2. The defendant intended to use force immediately to compel the
other person to do the act;
3. The defendant had no right to demand that the other person do
4. When the defendant made the threat, (he/she) had the present
ability to use force on the other person;
5. The defendant placed (himself/herself) in a position to compel
performance of the act (he/she) demanded and took all steps
necessary to carry out (his/her) intention(;/.)
<Give element 6 when instructing on self-defense or defense of another.>
6. The defendant did not act (in self-defense/ [or] in defense of
Someone commits an act willfully when he or she does it willingly or on
[The term use force means to touch in a harmful or offensive manner.
The slightest touching can be enough if it is done in a rude or angry
way. It is enough if the touching makes contact with the person,
including through his or her clothing. The touching need not cause pain
or injury of any kind.]
[The touching can be done indirectly by causing an object [or someone
else] to touch the other person.]
No one needs to actually have been injured by defendant’s act. But if
someone was injured, you may consider that fact, along with all the
other evidence, in deciding whether the defendant committed an assault[,
and if so, what kind of assault it was].
New January 2006
The court has a sua sponte duty to give an instruction defining the elements of the
If there is sufficient evidence of self-defense or defense of another, the court has a
sua sponte duty to instruct on the defense. Give bracketed element 6 and any
appropriate defense instructions. (See CALCRIM Nos. 3470-3477.)
Do not give an attempt instruction in conjunction with this instruction. There is no
crime of “attempted assault” in California. (In re James M. (1973) 9 Cal.3d 517,
519, 521-522 [108 Cal.Rptr. 89, 510 P.2d 33].)
• Elements. People v. McMakin (1857) 8 Cal. 547, 548-549; People v. McCoy
(1944) 25 Cal.2d 177, 192-193 [153 P.2d 315]; People v. Lipscomb (1993) 17
Cal.App.4th 564, 570 [21 Cal.Rptr.2d 445]; see also People v. Page (2004) 123
Cal.App.4th 1466, 1473 [20 Cal.Rptr.3d 857].
• Mental State for Assault. People v. Williams (2001) 26 Cal.4th 779, 790 [111
Cal.Rptr.2d 114, 29 P.3d 197].
• Least Touching. People v. Myers (1998) 61 Cal.App.4th 328, 335 [71 Cal.Rptr.2d
518] [citing People v. Rocha (1971) 3 Cal.3d 893, 899-900, fn. 12 [92 Cal.Rptr.
172, 479 P.2d 372]].
1 Witkin & Epstein, California Criminal Law (4th ed. 2012) Crimes Against the
Person, § 45.
6 Millman, Sevilla & Tarlow, California Criminal Defense Practice, Ch. 142, Crimes
Against the Person, §§ 142.11, 142.11A (Matthew Bender).
ASSAULTIVE AND BATTERY CRIMES CALCRIM No. 916