[conspire] (forw) Reiser trial: DNA tests partially flubbed, defence motion for mistrial

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Tue Feb 5 22:08:41 PST 2008

Quoting Christian Einfeldt (einfeldt at gmail.com):

> > Equally disconcerting is the possibility that this happens quite a
> > bit: A large number of disappearances and murders per year go
> > completely unsolved,
> Do you follow this kind of thing?  

No, I really don't.  However, I'm aware that, for example, the FBI
National Crime Information Center records a bit over 800,000 new missing
person records every year -- which of course includes quite a large
number of non-murder causes including several varieties of non-violent, 
voluntary disappearance.

> I am wondering how many murders go unsolved. 

To know that, you'd have to know:

o  How many get reported.
o  How many are known to at least some people but go unreported.
o  How many aren't even detected as being murders.

DoJ keeps statistics on reported murders, and the demographic average
nationwide was about 5 per 100,000 population per year in the most
recent year reported (2005).

> [...] the thing that would be really interesting, Rick, is to for us
> to see what the jury instructions are as submitted to the jury.  It
> will be a long document.  Probably more than 100 pages.

It _is_ more than 100 pages.  356 pages, to be precise.  I skim-read it
recently, when I came at least somewhat close to being empaneled on a
murder jury here in San Mateo County.

(Based on a similar experience a decade earlier, I know that if you're
in a jury pool and want to have some idea of the legal context, you want
to do your reading as early as possible, to predate the inevitable
judge's order to not research the law on your own.)

> For those wanting to maybe dig into the matter and guess as to what
> the jury instructions on causation will be, don't just look at the
> Penal Code alone.  Instead, look at CALJIC,  Every law library will
> have it:
> http://west.thomson.com/store/product.aspx?product_id=11661582
> That is the standardized jury instructions book.

That is _not_, however, the standard jury instructions for criminal
cases in California.  _That_ you'll find here:

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