Tennessee Pattern Jury Instructions — Criminal

The TPI-Criminal Committee of the Tennessee Judicial Conference provides the following information as a service to Tennessee judges and lawyers. Please be aware that this is for informational purposes only and is not to be construed as legal advice.

The instructions adopted by the Tennessee Judicial Conference's Pattern Jury Instruction Committee (Criminal) are included in the Eighteenth Edition of the pattern jury instruction book published by West/Thomson Reuters in 2014.  If the committee adopts additional instructions prior to the publication of the Nineteenth Edition in 2015, the AOC will post those instructions on its website.

Lesser Included Offenses
Last updated February 28, 2008

The TPI-Criminal Committee has received many requests from trial judges for assistance in jury charges which involve lesser included offenses, a rapidly evolving area of criminal law.

Judge Joseph M. Tipton of the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals has compiled a listing of decisions of the Tennessee Supreme Court and Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals, applying State v. Burns, 6 S.W.3d 454 (Tenn. 1999) to lesser included offenses. Judge Tipton has authorized the Committee to post his outline for informational purposes.

It should be noted that in these opinions the court determined only whether particular crimes were lesser included offenses but did not necessarily list all lesser included offenses for each indicted offense.

The TPI-Criminal Committee expresses its appreciation to Judge Tipton for providing this user's guide. The guide will be periodically updated.

PLEASE NOTE: PUBLIC CHAPTER 439, WHICH BECAME EFFECTIVE ON JULY 1, 2009, REDEFINES LESSER INCLUDED OFFENSES.