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      CCRP 905.2     


Art. 905.2.  Sentencing hearing; procedure and evidence; jury instructions

A.  The sentencing hearing shall focus on the circumstances of the offense, the character and propensities of the offender, and the victim, and the impact that the crime has had on the victim, family members, friends, and associates.  The victim or his family members, friends, and associates may decline the right to testify but, after testifying for the state, shall be subject to cross-examination.  The hearing shall be conducted according to the rules of evidence.  Evidence relative to aggravating or mitigating circumstances shall be relevant irrespective of whether the defendant places his character at issue.  Insofar as applicable, the procedure shall be the same as that provided for trial in the Code of Criminal Procedure.  The jury may consider any evidence offered at the trial on the issue of guilt.  The defendant may testify in his own behalf. In the event of retrial, the defendant's testimony shall not be admissible except for the purposes of impeachment.

B.  Notwithstanding any provision to the contrary, the court shall instruct the jury that under the provisions of the state constitution, the governor is empowered to grant a reprieve, pardon, or commutation of sentence following conviction of a crime, and the governor may, in exercising such authority, commute or modify a sentence of life imprisonment without benefit of parole to a lesser sentence including the possibility of parole, and may commute a sentence of death to a lesser sentence of life imprisonment without benefit of parole.  The court shall also instruct the jury that under this authority the governor may allow the release of an offender either by reducing a life imprisonment or death sentence to the time already served by the offender or by granting the offender a pardon.  The defense may argue or present evidence to the jury on the frequency and extent of use by the governor of his authority.  The provisions of this Paragraph shall not be construed to require that members of the Board of Pardons attend sentencing hearings for capital cases.

Added by Acts 1976, No. 694, §1.  Acts 1993, No. 436, §1; Acts 1994, 3rd Ex. Sess., No. 14, §1; Acts 1995, No. 551, §1; Acts 1999, No. 783, §3, eff. Jan. 1, 2000; Acts 2001, No. 280, §1; Acts 2012, No. 106, §1.

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