OUJI-CR 1-11


The Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution guarantees that a person charged with a crime has the right to the assistance of counsel. This Constitutional guarantee also provides that an individual charged with a crime has the right to waive representation by legal counsel, and proceed to trial representing himself/herself, and act as his/her own attorney. The defendant has elected to waive his/her right to counsel and represent himself/herself in this matter. You are not to let the fact that [Name of Defendant] has elected to represent himself/herself influence your decision in this case. Instead, you must decide this case based upon the law in the court's instructions and the evidence received during the course of the trial.

[Name of Standby Counsel] has been appointed as standby counsel to the defendant but not to act as his/her attorney in this case. The role of standby counsel is limited to answering [Name of Defendant]'s questions and providing other assistance but standby counsel will not be participating directly in the trial. In electing to represent himself/herself, the defendant has assumed the full responsibility of acting as his/her own attorney in this case and will be held to the same standards and requirements of an actual practicing attorney. Standby counsel will be available to answer [Name of Defendant]'s questions during the course of the trial but the defendant will solely make all of the decisions concerning his/her defense.

Notes on Use

The trial court should give the second paragraph if it has appointed a standby counsel for the defendant.

Committee Comments

The Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals emphasized in Brown v. State, 2018 OK CR 3, ¶ 48, 422 P.3d 155, 166, that "the trial court must ensure that a defendant choosing self-representation understands his rights, not only in the guilt/innocence process, but also in the sentencing process."

(2019 Supp.)