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Name: People v. Adams
Case #: F043976
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 5 DCA
Citation: 124 Cal.App.4th 1486

A trial court was not required to specially instruct the jury on the meaning of the word “maliciously” in a prosecution for battery on a police dog. The Court of Appeal held that the court properly denied the defense request for a special instruction because “maliciously” as used in Penal Code section 600, subdivision (a), has no special or technical meaning. Nor did the court err in failing to give a sua sponte instruction regarding the meaning of “legal justification” under the statute, since the jury was instructed that they could not convict the defendant of battery on a police dog if they had a reasonable doubt as to the lawfulness of the arrest or the reasonableness of the force used.

Opinion Date: 12/16/2004