Penal Code §1126

Peace be with you

California Penal Code §1126 says, “In a trial for any offense, questions of law are to be decided by the court, and questions of fact by the jury. Although the jury has the power to find a general verdict, which includes questions of law as well as of fact, they are bound, nevertheless, to receive as law what is laid down as such by the court.”

What this says is the Jury in a trial of a misdemeanor or felony must decide if something is a fact, and the judge gets to decide if the law is fair or applied in the interest of justice. But, it specifically says, “the jury has the power to find a general verdict.” Meaning the jury can decide someone is NOT GUILTY!, even if the facts prove otherwise. We see this in marijuana cases where community’s refuse to convect their neighbors.

The right to “find a general verdict” of not guilty is sometimes called “jury nullification.” As far as I know the term was coined in 1979 by the chair of the Montana Libertarian Party, Larry Dodge. A footnote to §1126, which I just read for the first time yesterday, thanks Dick, reads:

The Legislature finds and declares that every person has a right to speak out, to poke fun, to stir up controversy without fear of criminal prosecution. The Legislature finds and declares that the continued existence of vague laws on the books is an invitation to their unconstitutional use,at the peril of civil liberties.”

This is clear proof that when the California Legislature wrote §1126 they intended juries to use their right to jury nullification. Though the courts, the DAs and the Attorney General all believe that juries can’t use “jury nullification,” that they don’t “have the right to refuse to apply the law,” the law clearly explaines, “a general law verdict, . . . includes questions of the law as well as of fact.”

When I speak of “modern policing” I mean the preemptive sort of “law enforcement” we have today. Like drunk in public. Nothing is socially harmful about being drunk, stoned, high or any of those other “crimes” designed to prevent other crimes. That’s the whole purpose of those laws. If you get high you might steal in order to keep getting high, or go on a violent rampage because your drunk, etc. etc.

The courts, jails, and cops shops are going broke, and bleeding us of more and more money evey year. The reason why is the laws. If our other three branches of government can’t do their jobs worth a pound of dog shit then maybe we need to legislate from the jury box.

love eternal


6 Responses to “Penal Code §1126”

  1. transient Says:

    excellent post…wish more people knew about and exercised their rights as jurors…sort of…i read (maybe on wikipedia?) that jury nullification was used by racists in the south during the first half of the 20th century to find white people not guilty when they murdered black people….who really expects any justice from the courts anyhow?

    It sure seems that jury nullification could be used as a powerful tool to nullify immoral laws (such as the drug laws and the criminalization of dissent)…it’s at least worth a try even if it only disrupts things for a bit. Abolishing the Injustice system itself would be a more prudent course of action.

  2. Anonymous Says:

    You can’t decide if you’re not on the jury.

    How many years have you been a Humboldt county voter and how many times have you been called for jury service? If called, were you ever empaneled on a jury?

    FYI, some people in HumCo are called for jury service every year.

  3. SoHumNoob Says:

    Well maybe we can keep jury nullification, we lost to habeas corpus after 1500 years.
    A big kiss to George Junior for furthering the police state. Guess he did his job.



  4. Noble Says:

    Jury Nullification is not a right they can give or take away so much as a natural consequence of our legal system. So long as jurors are not thrown in jail for the verdicts they render, nobody can stop a juror from voting their conscience. I wish I were on your jury.

  5. theplazoid Says:

    Peace be with you

    It has been my experience that honest people get bumped from juries. When they ask honest people if they dislike the cops they say yes and are not chosen as jurors, but if a red neck hippy hater is asked if they hate hippies then they lie and say no and are kept.

    As far as my jury goes, I have way too many grounds for having it dismissed before then. I hope it gets to a jury, but it is really a long shot at this point. What I do hope comes out of all this is that Jimmy Smith’s offensively conspicuous attempts to silence dissent will be exposed and stopped.

    I got to be pretty pissed off to study this legal shit, and I’m about at the point of my pissed offness that I am considering learning civil law and suing the mother fuckers. It already is going to cost the county a small fortune to prosecute me for speaking three and a half minutes in violation of an “about three minute” rule that is not even written down anywhere, and has ample evidence of selective enforcement. I think the supes ought to pass a rule that if a supe wants some nonviolent person thrown out of the meeting then they should have to pay to prosecute them at there own expense. But then again its pretty obvious that the supes don’t really concern themselves with prudent fiscalism. Just look around.

    love eternal

  6. Noble Says:

    Seems like they disqualify or “thank and excuse” anybody who has had any exposure to the “justice” system, too.

    It’s a shame that good people think they have to be so honest, even when your honesty is being used to oppress you, all of the time. Bad people don’t have the same reservation and it gives them a lot of advantages.

    “Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.”
    – Matthew 10:16

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