New Hampshire has drawn one step closer to creating a new law requiring courts to inform "the jury of its right to judge the facts and the application of the law in relation to the facts in controversy.” This week the New Hampshire state house passed (HB133) which reads, in part, as follows:
At the request of the defendant or the defendant’s attorney, the court shall instruct the jury as follows: “If you have a reasonable doubt as to whether the state has proved any one or more of the elements of the crime charged, you must find the defendant not guilty. However if you find that the state has proved all the elements of the offense charged beyond a reasonable doubt, you should find the defendant guilty. Even if you find that the state has proved all of the elements of the offense charged beyond a reasonable doubt, you may still find that based upon the facts of this case a guilty verdict will yield an unjust result, and you may find the defendant not guilty.”
It remains to be seen if the New Hampshire state senate will go along with the house and approve this bill. Last year, a similar bill did not make it out of the state senate.