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8.175 Attempted Sexual Abuse of Minor

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The defendant is charged in [Count _______ of] the indictment with attempted sexual abuse of a minor in violation of Section 2243(a) of Title 18 of the United States Code. In order for the defendant to be found guilty of that charge, the government must prove each of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

First, the defendant intended to engage in a sexual act with [name of victim], who had reached the age of twelve years but had not reached the age of sixteen years;

Second, [name of victim] was at least four years younger than the defendant;

Third, the defendant did something that was a substantial step toward committing the crime; and

Fourth, the offense was committed at [specify place of federal jurisdiction].

Mere preparation is not a substantial step toward committing the crime. To constitute a substantial step, a defendant’s act or actions must demonstrate that the crime will take place unless interrupted by independent circumstances.

The government need not prove that the defendant knew the age of [name of victim] or that the defendant knew that [name of victim] was at least four years younger than the defendant.

In this case, "sexual act" means [specify statutory definition].


See Comment to Instruction 8.164 (Aggravated Sexual Abuse).

See 18 U.S.C. § 2243(d), as to the penultimate paragraph of the instruction. See 18 U.S.C. § 2246(2) for the definition of sexual act referred to in the last paragraph of the instruction.

"[A] person may be convicted of an attempt to commit a crime even though that person may have actually completed the crime." United States v. Rivera-Relle, 333 F.3d 914, 921 (9th Cir.), cert. denied, 540 U.S. 977 (2003).

"To constitute a substantial step toward the commission of a crime, the defendant’s conduct must (1) advance the criminal purpose charged, and (2) provide some verification of the existence of that purpose." United States v. Goetzke, 494 F.3d 1231, 1235 (9th Cir.2007). Jurors do not need to agree unanimously as to which particular act or actions constituted a substantial step toward the commission of a crime. United States v. Hofus, 598 F.3d 1171, 1176 (9th Cir.2010).