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Criminal Jury Instructions

Criminal Jury Instructions Home

6.4-2  Robbery in the Second Degree -- 53a-135 (a) (1)

Revised to May 23, 2013

The defendant is charged [in count __] with robbery in the second degree.  The statute defining this offense reads in pertinent part as follows: 

a person is guilty of robbery in the second degree when (he/she) commits robbery and <insert appropriate subsection:>

  • 53-135 (a) (1) (A):  (he/she) is aided by another person actually present.

  • 53-135 (a) (1) (B):  in the course of the commission of the crime or of immediate flight therefrom (he/she) or another participant in the crime displays or threatens the use of what (he/she) represents by (his/her) words or conduct to be a deadly weapon or a dangerous instrument.

For you to find the defendant guilty of this charge, the state must prove the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:  

Element 1 - Committed robbery
The first element is that the defendant committed a robbery.  <Insert the elements from Robbery in the Third Degree, Instruction 6.4-3.>
 

Element 2 - Additional factor
The second element is that <insert as appropriate:>

  • 53-135 (a) (1) (A):  the defendant was aided by another person actually present.  To find that the defendant was aided by another person actually present, an accomplice must be found to be present and actively aiding or assisting in the crime.  Mere presence of an inactive companion, passive acquiescence, or the doing of innocent acts that may in fact aid the one who commits the crime, does not constitute such aid within the meaning of the statute.

  • 53-135 (a) (1) (B):  in the course of the commission of the crime or of immediate flight from the crime (he/she) or another participant in the crime displayed or threatened the use of what (he/she) represented by words or conduct to be a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument.  This does not require that the defendant or participant in fact had a deadly weapon or a dangerous instrument, but had an article or instrument that (he/she) represented as such.

"Deadly weapon" means any weapon, whether loaded or unloaded, from which a shot may be discharged, or a switchblade knife, gravity knife, billy, blackjack, bludgeon, or metal knuckles.  If the weapon is a firearm, it may be unloaded, but it must be in such condition that a shot may be discharged from it.  Thus, if the weapon is loaded but not in working order, it is not a deadly weapon.  If the weapon is unloaded but in working order, it is a deadly weapon.  The word "armed" simply requires that the weapon be in the defendant's possession.

"Dangerous instrument" means any instrument, article or substance which, under the circumstances in which it is used or attempted or threatened to be used, is capable of causing death or serious physical injury.  "Serious physical injury" means physical injury which creates a substantial risk of death, or which causes serious disfigurement, serious impairment of health or serious loss or impairment of the function of any bodily organ. It is important to note that the article need not be inherently dangerous; all that is required is that the article was capable of causing death or serious physical injury under the circumstances in which it was used.  Any article or substance, without limitation and even though harmless under normal use, may be found by you to be a dangerous instrument if, under the circumstances of its use or threatened or attempted use, it is capable of producing serious physical injury or death.  The state need not prove that in fact death or serious physical injury resulted, only that the instrument had that potential under the circumstances.

Conclusion

In summary, the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that <insert the concluding summary from the instruction for robbery in the third degree>, and that (he/she) (was aided by another person actually present / displayed or threatened the use of what was represented as a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument).

If you unanimously find that the state has proved beyond a reasonable doubt each of the elements of the crime of robbery in the second degree, then you shall find the defendant guilty.  On the other hand, if you unanimously find that the state has failed to prove beyond a reasonable doubt any of the elements, you shall then find the defendant not guilty.

Commentary

Sentence Enhancer
General Statutes 53a-136a provides a sentence enhancement if the robbery involved a carjacking.  See Sentence enhancer: Carjacking in the Introduction to Robbery.
 


 

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