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Criminal Jury Instructions

Criminal Jury Instructions Home

8.2-25  Sale or Transfer of Assault Weapon -- 53-202b

Revised to December 1, 2007

The defendant is charged [in count __] with sale of an assault weapon.  The statute defining this offense reads in pertinent part as follows: 

a person is guilty of the sale or transfer of an assault weapon when such person, within this state, (distributes / transports or imports into this state / keeps for sale / offers or exposes for sale / gives away) any assault weapon.

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

Element 1 - Sold or transferred assault weapon
The first element is that the defendant knowingly (distributed / transported or imported into this state / kept for sale / offered or exposed for sale / gave away) an assault weapon.  "Assault weapon" is defined by statute and includes <insert type of assault weapon>.1  The terms (distribute / transport / import / sale / give) have their ordinary meaning. 

A person acts "knowingly" when (he/she) is aware that (his/her) conduct is of such nature or that such circumstance exists.  <See Knowledge, Instruction 2.3-3.>

Element 2 - Within Connecticut
The second element is that the (distribution / transportation or importation / keeping for sale / offering or exposing for sale / giving away) of the assault weapon took place within the state of Connecticut.  This means that the defendant's conduct must have occurred within the state of Connecticut.

Conclusion

In summary, the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant (distributed / transported or imported into this state / kept for sale / offered or exposed for sale / gave away) an assault weapon within the state of Connecticut.

If you unanimously find that the state has proved beyond a reasonable doubt each of the elements of the crime of the sale or transfer of an assault weapon, 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 "Assault weapon" is defined in 53-202b to include specifically listed models of firearms as well as firearms not specifically listed that have certain characteristics.  The instruction should be tailored to the type of assault weapon alleged in the case.

Commentary

Sentence Enhancer
Section 53-202b (a) (2) provides an enhanced penalty for transfer to a person under the age of eighteen.  The jury must find this proved beyond a reasonable doubt.  See Sentence Enhancers, Instruction 2.11-4.

Exceptions
See General Statutes 53-202b (b) for exceptions to culpability.  "[W]here exceptions to a prohibition in a criminal statute are situated separately from the enacting clause, the exceptions are to be proven by the defense."  (Internal quotation marks omitted.)  State v. Valinski, 254 Conn. 107, 123 (2000) (rule also applies when the exception is found in a separate statute).
 


 

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