Fremont, CA asked in Criminal Law for California

Q: In a conspiracy case, is it true that a jury must state on the verdict form if an overt Act was committed?

Overt Acts were alleged in the information, but jury never made a finding on any of the overt acts that were alleged. The jury never stated on the vertical form whether or not an OVERT ACT was committed or if any of the overt Acts were proven Beyond A Reasonable Doubt.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Stanley Dale Radtke
Stanley Dale Radtke
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • San Leandro, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: The jury is not required to state on the verdict form whether an overt act was committed. This fact finding in implicit in a guilty verdict as the overt act is one of the required elements of the charged offense. Those elements would be contained within the CALCRIM instruction, you example number 415.

To prove that (the/a) defendant is guilty of this crime, the People must prove that:

1. The defendant intended to agree and did agree with [one or more of] (the other defendant[s]/ [or] <insert name[s] or description[s] of coparticipant[s]>) to commit<insert alleged crime[s]>;

2. At the time of the agreement, the defendant and [one or more of]the other alleged member[s] of the conspiracy intended that one or more of them would commit <insert alleged crime[s]>;

3. (The/One of the) defendant[s][,] [or <insert name[s]or description[s] of coparticipant[s]>][,] [or (both/all) of them]committed [at least one of] the following alleged overt act[s] to accomplish <insert alleged crime[s]>:<insert the alleged overt acts>;AND

4. [At least one of these/This] overt act[s] was committed in California

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