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3.15.1 - Charge: Concluding Remarks

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Questions

If, at any stage of your discussions, you would like me to repeat or explain any directions of law I have given you, please do not hesitate to ask. It is fundamental that you understand the principles you are required to apply. If you have any doubt about those principles, then you are not only entitled to ask for further assistance, but you should ask for it.

You should do this by handing a note to my tipstaff indicating what your question is. S/he will pass it to me, and after discussing the matter with counsel, we will reassemble in court to assist you.

There is really only one thing that you must not include on any note, and that is the numbers involved in any part of your discussions such as any vote within the jury. That matter must remain completely confidential to you and that includes even telling me about it in a note. Please in any note leave the numbers out. [1]

Transcripts

If the jury has not been provided with a transcript, add the following shaded section:

I also want to remind you that all of the evidence in this trial has been tape-recorded and transcribed. If at any time during your discussions you wish to have a certain section of the evidence replayed to you, or have a section of the transcript [read back/provided] to you, please let me know. You can do this by providing a note to my tipstaff, outlining the part of the evidence you wish to hear.

Conclusion

I have now completed my summing-up. With a final reminder that any verdict[s] you reach must be unanimous, I ask you to go to the jury room to consider your verdict[s]. When you have reached a verdict or if you have a question, please send a note to the court through the tipstaff.

Notes

[1] In MRJ v R (2011) 33 VR 306; [2011] VSCA 374, the Court of Appeal stated that jurors should be instructed to omit any information on the outcome of discussions when asking for further directions or assistance

Last updated: 27 March 2019

See Also

3.15 - Concluding Remarks