Jury Was Asked Not to Use Criminal Defendant's Silence Against Him
Was Defendant's Constitutional Rights Violated As Jury Was Asked Not to Use His Silence Against Him and No Explanation Regarding Flight Was Demanded ?
In State v. Brady, Summit App. No. 22034, 2005 Ohio 593, the trial court instructed the jury on the issue of flight in virtually the same manner as the trial court in this case instructed the jury on that issue. See Brady, at P6.
In Brady, the defendant argued that the instruction on flight improperly placed the burden of proof on him and that the trial court allowed his silence to be used as evidence against him in violation of his constitutional right to remain silent. See id. at P 4.
The defendant relied upon Fields as support for his position.
The Ninth District Court of Appeals in Brady disagreed with the defendant's contention, and it found his reliance upon Fields to be unavailing because the instruction in Fields was distinguishable. See id. at P 4, 8. the Brady court determined that the instruction did not direct defendant to personally explain the circumstances of his flight, and that the jury was instructed that the defendant's silence was not to be used against him. See id. at P 9.
The Brady court concluded: "Under these circumstances, we do not find that Defendant's constitutional rights were violated." Id. at P 9.