Tag Archives: CC 401


Aider and Abettor: Natural and Probable Consequences – Unanimity as to Commission of Nontarget Offense
October 22nd, 2019

The majority opinion in People v. Smith (2014) 60 Cal. 4th 603 concluded that the requirement of juror unanimity as to all essential elements of the charge does not apply to commission of the nontarget offense alleged under the natural and probable consequences doctrine:   The prosecution theory was that Littleton was the killer. But […]


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CC 401 SHOULD EXPRESSLY ADDRESS THE FACT THAT MERE KNOWLEDGE OF THE CRIME IS INSUFFICIENT FOR AIDER AND ABETTOR LIABILITY
September 5th, 2017

CALCRIM 401 correctly states that “being present as the scene of the crime or [failure] to prevent the crime does not, by itself, make [a person] an aider and abettor.” (See People v. Durham (1969) 70 C2d 171, 181; In re Jose T. (1991) 230 CA3d 1455, 1460.)   However, the CALCrim language is incomplete […]


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Reversible Chiu Error: Not Clear Beyond A Reasonable Doubt That Jurors Rejected Natural and Probable Consequences Theory
August 22nd, 2016

People v. Brown (2016) 247 CA4th 211 reversed Brown’s first degree murder conviction in light of People v. Chiu (2014) 59 Cal.4th 155. The jury was instructed on three first degree murder theories: (1) Brown was the actual killer, (2) he aided and abetted the actual killer with the intent to kill, and (3) he […]


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Chiu Error: Review Granted to Reconsider People v. Favor (2012) 54 Cal.4th 868
August 15th, 2016

The CSC has granted review in several cases to consider whether to convict an aider and abettor of attempted willful, deliberate and premeditated murder under the natural and probable consequences doctrine, must a premeditated attempt to murder have been a natural and probable consequence of the target offense? In other words, should People v. Favor […]


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Chiu Applies Retroactively to Convictions That Were Final on Appeal When Chiu Was Decided
August 9th, 2016

In re Lopez (2016) 246 CA4th 350 concerned a conviction which was final on appeal when People v. Chiu (2014) 59 C4th 155 was decided. See The Chiu Doctrine Explained.  The Chiu opinion did not state whether it applied retroactively to convictions that were final on appeal when it was decided. Lopez concluded that Chiu […]


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Chiu Doctrine Not Applicable to Transferred Intent
August 1st, 2016

People v. Chiu (2014) 59 C4th 155 held that an aider and abettor could not be found guilty of premeditated murder under the natural and probable consequences doctrine because the mental state for premeditation and deliberation is “uniquely subjective and personal.” (See The Chiu Doctrine Explained.) However, People v. Vasquez (2016) 246 CA4th 1019 held […]


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The Chiu Doctrine Explained
July 8th, 2016

People v. Chiu (2014) 59 C4th 155 created an important exception to the natural and probable consequences doctrine with respect to premeditated malice murder and attempted murder. As Chiu explained, “[t]here are two distinct forms of culpability for aiders and abettors. First, an aider and abettor with the necessary mental state is guilty of the […]


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Withdrawal of Aider and Abettor–Notification Not Possible
May 15th, 2015

In People v. Battle (2011) 198 Cal. App. 4th 50, 67, the defense challenged CC 401 because it “does not allow for the withdrawal defense if the defendant attempts to notify the other participants but such notification is impossible.” The Court of Appeal rejected the challenge: “This argument is without merit because the instruction properly […]


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Aider And Abettor: Natural And Probable Consequences – Unanimity As To Commission Of Nontarget Offense
January 21st, 2015

  The majority opinion in People v. Smith (2014) 60 Cal. 4th 603 concluded that the requirement of juror unanimity as to all essential elements of the charge does not apply to commission of the nontarget offense alleged under the natural and probable consequences doctrine:    The prosecution theory was that Littleton was the killer. […]


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CC 401 Defense Theory Instruction: Knowledge Element For Aider And Abettor Liability
July 20th, 2014

  People v. Stallworth (2008) 164 Cal. App. 4th 1079, concluded that CC 401 is neither confusing nor incomplete provided that CC 220 is also given so that the jury understands that the reasonable doubt standard applies to an aider and abettor’s knowledge.   However, the defense should have the right to an instruction pinpointing […]


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