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7.1 Duty to Deliberate

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7.1 DUTY TO DELIBERATE

When you begin your deliberations, elect one member of the jury as your [presiding juror] [foreperson] who will preside over the deliberations and speak for you here in court.

You will then discuss the case with your fellow jurors to reach agreement if you can do so. Your verdict, whether guilty or not guilty, must be unanimous.

Each of you must decide the case for yourself, but you should do so only after you have considered all the evidence, discussed it fully with the other jurors, and listened to the views of your fellow jurors.

Do not be afraid to change your opinion if the discussion persuades you that you should. But do not come to a decision simply because other jurors think it is right.

It is important that you attempt to reach a unanimous verdict but, of course, only if each of you can do so after having made your own conscientious decision. Do not change an honest belief about the weight and effect of the evidence simply to reach a verdict.

Comment

Ordinarily, the "general unanimity instruction suffices to instruct the jury that they must be unanimous on whatever specifications form the basis of the guilty verdict." United States v. Lyons, 472 F.3d 1055, 1068 (9th Cir.2007) (quoting United States v. Kim, 196 F.3d 1079, 1082 (9th Cir.1999)). A specific unanimity instruction is required if it appears that there is a "genuine possibility of jury confusion or that a conviction may occur as the result of different jurors concluding that the defendant committed different acts." Id. (citing United States v. Anguiano, 873 F.2d 1314, 1319 (9th Cir.1989)) (internal quotation marks omitted). A specific unanimity instruction may also be necessary in certain circumstances to avoid constitutional error. See United States v. Ramirez, 537 F.3d 1075, 1083 (9th Cir.2008) (trial court appropriately instructed jury it must unanimously reject self-defense theory in order to find defendant guilty). For further discussion of when a specific unanimity instruction is needed, see Instruction 7.9 (Specific Issue Unanimity) (Comment only).