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Criminal Jury Instructions

Criminal Jury Instructions Home

6.7-4  Harassment in the First Degree -- § 53a-182b

Revised to December 1, 2007

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

a person is guilty of harassment in the first degree when, with the intent to harass, annoy, alarm, or terrorize another person, (he/she) threatens to kill or physically injure that person or any other person, and communicates such threat by telephone, or by telegraph, mail, computer network or any other form of written communication, in a manner likely to cause annoyance or alarm and has been convicted of <insert specified felony>.1

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

Element 1 - Intent
The first element is that the defendant had the specific intent to harass, annoy, alarm, or terrorize2 another person.  A person acts "intentionally" with respect to a result when (his/her) conscious objective is to cause such result.  <See Intent: Specific, Instruction 2.3-1.>

"Harass" means to trouble, worry or torment.  "Annoy" means to irritate, vex, bother as by repeated action.  "Alarm" means to make suddenly afraid, anxious, or frightened.  "Terrorize" means to cause intense fear or apprehension.3 

Element 2 - Threat
The second element is that the defendant threatened to kill or physically injure that person or any other person.

Element 3 - Communicated threat
The third element is that the defendant communicated such threat by telephone, or by telegraph, mail, email or any other form of written communication, in a manner likely to cause annoyance or alarm.  <Describe specific allegations.>

Element 4 - Prior conviction
The fourth element is that the defendant had previously been convicted of a felony.  "Felony" is an offense for which a person may be sentenced to a term of imprisonment in excess of one year.  "Convicted" means having a judgment of conviction entered by a court of competent jurisdiction.

Conclusion

In summary, the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that 1) the defendant intended to harass, annoy, alarm or terrorize <insert name of person>, 2) the defendant threatened to kill or physically injure <insert name of person>, 3) the threat was communicated by means of <insert means of making threat>, and 4) the defendant had previously been convicted of a felony.

If you unanimously find that the state has proved beyond a reasonable doubt each of the elements of the crime of harassment in the first 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.
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1 To be convicted of a violation of § 53a-182b, the defendant must have previously been convicted of a capital felony, a class A felony, a class B felony, except a conviction under section 53a-86 or 53a-122, a class C felony, except a conviction under section 53a-87, 53a-152 or 53a-153, or a class D felony under sections 53a-60 to 53a-60c, inclusive, 53a-72a, 53a-72b, 53a-95, 53a-103, 53a-103a, 53a-114, 53a-136 or 53a-216.

2 State v. Marsala, 43 Conn. App. 527, 540 (1996), cert. denied, 239 Conn. 957 (1997) (these words are not conceptually distinct).

3 State v. Dyson, 238 Conn. 784, 798-99 (1996); State v. Crudup, 81 Conn. App. 248, 261, cert. denied, 268 Conn. 913 (2004).
 


 

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