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The CCA seems to approve of TPC criminal charges every time they come up. Our judge also consults them regularly and would like us to start using them.

Are DA's and CA's out there using these? If so, what do you do think of them? Recommendations?

It doesn't appear that all offenses are covered yet. What do you do when you need to instruct on multiple counts and one is in the TPC but the other isn't? Do you draft a TPC-esque instruction?
 
Posts: 104 | Location: Brazos County, Texas | Registered: February 10, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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We have one district court using them. I do not care for them, although I have colleagues and acquaintances who like them. They do not cover everything yet and there are some inconsistencies. For the price there should be complete coverage and annual updates.
 
Posts: 2135 | Location: McKinney, Texas, USA | Registered: February 15, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I agree that they are overpriced and should include updates.

We just tried an attempted indecency with child by contact and I built a PJC jury charge for the first time.

It is also extremely annoying that they don't yet include everything. I have a 5 count indictment going to trial in April. 3 counts are covered in the PJC, but two aren't. Judge wants everything in PJC format.

I was hoping someone out there would have done a PJC format charge on tampering and/or FSRA.
 
Posts: 104 | Location: Brazos County, Texas | Registered: February 10, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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We use them.

No, I don't like them but I suspect that may be cause I'm a dinosaur. to that end, I am trying to keep an open mind.

Unfortunately, in our county (Like many I would guess) I prepare the Court's Charge and it takes me at least twice as long to do it using the PJC.
 
Posts: 233 | Location: Anderson, Texas | Registered: July 11, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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As far as updates are concerned, it should be remembered that these are being written by a committee on an ad hoc basis by a governmental agency. Texas Tech Law School therefore accurately observes that: "The printed volumes of Texas Pattern Jury Charges are not updated regularly."

In general, I would assert their format is likely somewhat easier for jurors to understand. I am uncertain whether this statement by the association is entirely accurate: "they provide the most comprehensive and defensible basis for generating criminal jury charges." See TDCAA. Obviously, McClung's has not yet been driven out of business. James Publishing. For a full description of the project see George Dix.
 
Posts: 2368 | Registered: February 07, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks for the Dix link. It looks like it has useful info. But the hyperlinks within aren't working. You don't happen to have the full paper, do you?
 
Posts: 104 | Location: Brazos County, Texas | Registered: February 10, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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No, I do not, but maybe someone on this forum will come to your assistance.

I will add one additional observation. The State Bar books come with extensive comments that in themselves may be worth the cost of the book. While McCormick's has some annotations, the SBOT committee offers more. It would be better if the bar used a different approach, say similar to the Texas Litigation Guide, but their aim is certainly worthwhile.
 
Posts: 2368 | Registered: February 07, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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We use them because the Judge requires it. We do not like them at all. They are harder to prepare, not everything is available, and in many instances they put a higher burden on the State than is required by law. I don't believe they are easier for jurors to understand either.
 
Posts: 33 | Location: Crockett,Texas | Registered: April 02, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I have the same frustration with many offenses not being covered, especially when putting together a charge on multiple counts where some offenses are covered and some are not

. . . and I have gotten the feeling that they do increase the State's burden, but I can't really put my finger on it. Can you point to any specific examples?
 
Posts: 104 | Location: Brazos County, Texas | Registered: February 10, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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We are no longer using them in our county. I personally used a pattern jury charge in one case and I had a juror tell me when the trial was over that they were totally confused and couldn't understand the jury charge. The person went on to add that the state would "lose cases" if we didn't do something about the jury charge.

After my trial, another court had a murder conviction reversed because of a jury charge issue.

We are done.
 
Posts: 5 | Registered: February 11, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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