8.175 ATTEMPTED SEXUAL ABUSE OF MINOR
(18 U.S.C. § 2243(a))
The defendant is charged in [Count _______ of] the indictment with attempted sexual abuse of a minor in violation of Section 2243(a) of Title 18 of the United States Code. In order for the defendant to be found guilty of that charge, the government must prove each of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:
First, the defendant intended to engage in a sexual act with [name of victim], who had reached the age of twelve years but had not reached the age of sixteen years;
Second, [name of victim] was at least four years younger than the defendant;
Third, the defendant did something that was a substantial step toward committing the crime and that strongly corroborated the defendant’s intent to commit the crime; and
Fourth, the offense was committed at [specify place of federal jurisdiction].
Mere preparation is not a substantial step toward committing the crime. To constitute a substantial step, a defendant’s act or actions must unequivocally demonstrate that the crime will take place unless interrupted by independent circumstances.
Jurors do not need to agree unanimously as to which particular act or actions constituted a substantial step toward the commission of a crime.
The government need not prove that the defendant knew the age of [name of victim] or that the defendant knew that [name of victim] was at least four years younger than the defendant.
In this case, "sexual act" means [specify statutory definition].
See Comment to Instruction 8.164 (Aggravated Sexual Abuse).
See 18 U.S.C. § 2243(d), as to the penultimate paragraph of the instruction. See 18 U.S.C. § 2246(2) for the definition of sexual act referred to in the last paragraph of the instruction.
"To constitute a substantial step, a defendant’s actions must cross the line between preparation and attempt by unequivocally demonstrating that the crime will take place unless interrupted by independent circumstances." United States v. Goetzke, 494 F.3d 1231, 1237 (9th Cir. 2007) (internal quotations omitted).
The "strongly corroborated" language in this instruction is taken from United States v. Snell, 627 F.2d 186, 187 (9th Cir. 1980) ("A conviction for attempt requires proof of culpable intent and conduct constituting a substantial step toward commission of the crime that strongly corroborates that intent") and United States v. Darby, 857 F.2d 623, 625 (9th Cir. 1988) (same).
Jurors do not need to agree unanimously as to which particular act or actions constituted a substantial step toward the commission of a crime. United States v. Hofus, 598 F.3d 1171, 1176 (9th Cir. 2010).
"[A] person may be convicted of an attempt to commit a crime even though that person may have actually completed the crime." United States v. Rivera-Relle, 333 F.3d 914, 921 (9th Cir. 2003).