CACI No. 5008. Duty to Abide by Translation Provided in Court

Judicial Council of California Civil Jury Instructions (2023 edition)

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5008.Duty to Abide by Translation Provided in Court
Some testimony was given in [insert language other than English]. An
interpreter provided translation for you at the time that the testimony
was given. You must rely solely on the translation provided by the
interpreter, even if you understood the language spoken by the witness.
Do not retranslate any testimony for other jurors.
New April 2004
Directions for Use
If this instruction is used, the advisory committee recommends that it be read to the
jury before reading instructions on the substantive law.
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.
“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
1 Witkin, California Evidence (5th ed. 2012) Hearsay, § 126
3 Witkin, California Evidence (5th ed. 2012) Presentation, § 40
1 California Trial Guide, Unit 3, Other Non-Evidentiary Motions, § 3.32 (Matthew
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 § 8.119 (Cal CJER 2019)

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