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Name: People v. Mayo
Case #: B180282
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 7
Opinion Date: 06/14/2006

The trial court’s failure to instruct the jury on the meaning of reasonable doubt was harmless because the jury was adequately informed of the reasonable doubt standard. The trial court in this case apparently inadvertently failed to read CALJIC 2.90 to the jury. Apply the Watson standard, the Court of Appeal found the error harmless. Although the reasonable doubt instruction is critical, the federal constitution does not require the trial court to define reasonable doubt, and other instructions adequately informed the jury of the reasonable doubt standard.