California Civil Jury Instructions (CACI) (2017)

108. Duty to Abide by Translation Provided in Court

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108.Duty to Abide by Translation Provided in Court
Some testimony will be given in [insert language other than English]. An
interpreter will provide a translation for you at the time that the
testimony is given. You must rely solely on the translation provided by
the interpreter, even if you understand the language spoken by the
witness. Do not retranslate any testimony for other jurors. If you believe
the court interpreter translated testimony incorrectly, let me know
immediately by writing a note and giving it to the [clerk/bailiff/court
attendant].
New September 2003; Revised April 2004, June 2011
Sources and Authority
• It is misconduct for a juror to retranslate for other jurors testimony that has
been translated by the court-appointed interpreter. (People v. Cabrera (1991)
230 Cal.App.3d 300, 303 [281 Cal.Rptr. 238].)
• “It is well-settled a juror may not conduct an independent investigation into the
facts of the case or gather evidence from outside sources and bring it into the
jury room. It is also misconduct for a juror to inject his or her own expertise
into the jury’s deliberation.” (People v. Cabrera, supra, 230 Cal.App.3d at p.
303.)
• “If [the juror] believed the court interpreter was translating incorrectly, the
proper action would have been to call the matter to the trial court’s attention,
not take it upon herself to provide her fellow jurors with the ‘correct’
translation.” (People v. Cabrera, supra, 230 Cal.App.3d at p. 304.)
Secondary Sources
7 Witkin, California Procedure (5th ed. 2008) Trial, § 281
1California Trial Guide, Unit 3, Other Non-Evidentiary Motions, § 3.32 (Matthew
Bender)
1A California Trial Guide, Unit 20, Procedural Rules for Presentation of Evidence,
§ 20.13 (Matthew Bender)
4 California Trial Guide, Unit 91, Jury Deliberations and Rendition of Verdict,
§§ 91.10, 91.12 (Matthew Bender)
California Judges Benchbook: Civil Proceedings—Trial (2d ed.) § 8.118 (Cal CJER
2010)
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