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HOUSE BILL NO. 388
INTRODUCED BY B. DAVIES
A BILL FOR AN ACT ENTITLED: "AN ACT IMPLEMENTING THE FREEDOM OF SPEECH OF A DEFENDANT IN A CRIMINAL CASE BY PROVIDING THAT A DEFENDANT'S OPENING STATEMENT, EVIDENCE, AND FINAL ARGUMENT MAY ADDRESS THE SPIRIT, INTENT, MERITS, VALIDITY, AND APPLICABILITY TO DEFENDANT OF ANY LAW RELATING TO THE CASE; AND AMENDING SECTION 46-16-401."
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MONTANA:
Section 1. Section 46-16-401, MCA, is amended to read:
"46-16-401. Order of trial. (1) After the jury is sworn but before the introduction of any evidence, the court may give
the jury general instructions concerning the conduct of the trial. The court shall give the jury
such cautionary instructions as
that may be required during the course of the trial.
(2) The prosecutor may make an opening statement and shall offer evidence in support of the prosecution. The defendant may make an opening statement prior to the prosecutor's offer of evidence or at the close of the prosecution's case but prior to the defendant's offer of evidence. A defendant's opening statement, evidence, and final argument may address the spirit, intent, merits, validity, and applicability to the defendant of any law relating to the case.
(3) The prosecutor and the defendant may, respectively, offer rebutting testimony only. However, the court, for good cause, may permit either party to offer evidence upon the original case at any time before the close of evidence.
(4) Prior to final arguments, the court shall inform the parties as to the instructions that will be given and read them to the jury.
(5) A written copy of the instructions, both general and special, must be delivered to the jury for its consideration during deliberations following the final arguments."
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Latest Version of HB 388 (HB0388.01)
Processed for the Web on January 26, 1999 (4:09PM)
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Status of this Bill| 1999 Session | Leg. Branch Home
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