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Criminal Jury Instructions

Criminal Jury Instructions Home

9.1-21  Larceny by Conversion of Leased Personal Property -- 53a-119 (13) and 53a-122 through 53a-125b

Revised to April 23, 2010

Note:  The degree of the larceny is determined by the value of the property stolen.  See 53a-122 (first degree); 53a-123 (second degree); 53a-124 (third degree); 53a-125 (fourth degree); 53a-125a (fifth degree); 53a-125b (sixth degree). The dollar amounts for the degrees of larceny were increased as of October 1, 2009.  See the table in Introduction to Larceny for the values in effect prior to that date.

The defendant is charged [in count __] with larceny by conversion of leased personal property in the (first / second / third / fourth / fifth / sixth) degree.  The statute defining this offense reads in pertinent part as follows: 

a person is guilty of conversion of leased personal property who, with the intent of converting the same to (his/her) own use or that of a third person, after renting or leasing such property under an agreement in writing which provides for the return of such property to a particular place at a particular time, (sells / conveys / conceals / aids in concealing) such property or any part thereof, and who thereafter fails to return such property to the agreed place or to any other place of business of the lessor within one hundred ninety-two hours after the lessor shall have sent a written demand to (him/her) for the return of the property by registered or certified mail addressed to (him/her) at (his/her) address as shown in the written agreement, unless a more recent address is known to the lessor.

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

Element 1 - Leased personal property
The first element is that the defendant leased personal property.  "To lease personal property" means to receive personal property pursuant to a written contract, by which one owning such property, the lessor, grants to another, the lessee, the right to possess, use and enjoy such personal property for a specified period of time for a specified sum.1  <Review the evidence of the written lease and re-read or paraphrase the statutory language regarding same.>

Element 2 - Failed to return
The second element is that the defendant failed to return the property at the agreed upon time and within 192 hours after <insert name of lessor> sent a written demand for the return of the property.  <Review the evidence of the demand letter.>

Element 3 - Intent
The third element is that the defendant intended to convert the property to (his/her) own use.  "Conversion" means an unauthorized assumption and exercise of the right of ownership over goods belonging to another, to the exclusion of the owner's rights.  Even when, as the state alleges here, a person's possession of the property was at first rightful, retention of that property can become an unlawful conversion.  "(His/Her) own use" would include selling, transferring or giving the property to another.

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.>

[<Insert if applicable:>  The statute defining the offense of the conversion of leased personal property provides that certain evidence, if believed, may be sufficient to establish intent.  If you find that the defendant was in the possession of personal property, received upon a written lease, who, with intent to defraud, (sells / conveys / conceals / aids in concealing) the property or any part of it, you may then find, but are not required to, that (he/she) intended to convert the property to (his/her) own use.  <See Intent to Defraud, Instruction 2.3-6.>]

[<Insert if applicable:>  The statute defining the offense of the conversion of leased personal property provides that certain evidence, if believed, may be sufficient to establish intent.  If you find that the defendant used a false or fictitious name or address in obtaining the leased personal property, you may then find, but are not required to, that (he/she) intended to convert the property to (his/her) own use.]

Element 4 - Value
The fourth element is that the property had a value that <insert as appropriate:>

First degree:  exceeded $20,000.
Second degree:  exceeded $10,000.
Third degree:  exceeded $2,000.
Fourth degree:  exceeded $1,000.
Fifth degree:  exceeded $500.
Sixth degree:  did not exceed $500.

<See Larceny, Instruction 9.1-1, for a full explanation of this element.>

Conclusion

In summary, the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that 1) the defendant leased personal property, 2) (he/she) failed to return the property, 3) (he/she) intended to convert the property to (his/her) own use, and 4) the value of the property was <insert value according to degree charged>.

If you unanimously find that the state has proved beyond a reasonable doubt each of the elements of the crime of larceny by conversion of leased personal property, 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 Defined in General Statutes 53a-119 (13) (D).
 


 

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