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18-8-609. Jury-tampering

Text

(1) A person commits jury-tampering if, with intent to influence a jurors vote, opinion, decision, or other action in a case, he attempts directly or indirectly to communicate with a juror other than as a part of the proceedings in the trial of the case.

(1.5) A person commits jury-tampering if he knowingly participates in the fraudulent processing or selection of jurors or prospective jurors.

(2) Jury-tampering is a class 5 felony; except that jury-tampering in any class 1 felony trial is a class 4 felony.

History

History.
Source: L. 71: R&RE, p. 466, 1. C.R.S. 1963: 40-8-609. L. 89: (1.5) added and (2) amended, pp. 776, 840, 10, 86, effective July 1.

Annotations

ANNOTATION

Acts constituting crime must be set forth specifically. Where the acts constituting the offense are not described by the statute, as in this section, the acts which constitute the crime must be set forth with enough specificity to give notice to the defendant. People v. Zupancic, 192 Colo. 231, 557 P.2d 1195.

The plain language of subsection (1) limits prosecution to attempts to influence persons who have been chosen as jurors or who have been selected as part of a venire from which a jury in a particular case will be chosen. People v. Iannicelli, 2017 COA 150, 454 P.3d 314, affd, 2019 CO 80, 449 P.3d 387.

Although the definition of juror in 18-8-601 includes persons who have merely been summoned for jury duty, this section limits the definition to jurors and prospective jurors in a specific case. People v. Iannicelli, 2017 COA 150, 454 P.3d 314, affd, 2019 CO 80, 449 P.3d 387.

This sections prohibition against jury tampering is limited to attempts to influence a persons vote, opinion, decision, or other action in a specifically identifiable case. People v. Iannicelli, 2019 CO 80, 449 P.3d 387.

Insufficient indictment. Where the prosecution contends in an indictment that the defendant attempted to induce a grand juror to disclose the names of the witnesses who appeared before the grand jury and their testimony, the indictment failed to disclose the prohibited conduct. People v. Zupancic, 192 Colo. 231, 557 P.2d 1195 (1976).

Where defendants handed out fliers advocating jury nullification to all potential jurors entering a courthouse, no crime under this section was committed. Intent to influence a jurors vote, opinion, decision, or other action is required, and a person who has merely been summoned for jury duty is in no position to take any such action. People v. Iannicelli, 2017 COA 150, 454 P.3d 314, affd, 2019 CO 80, 449 P.3d 387.

Applied in People v. Donachy, 196 Colo. 289, 586 P.2d 14 (1978).