Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 19.2. Criminal Procedure
Chapter 18. Sentence; Judgment; Execution of Sentence

§ 19.2-295. Ascertainment of punishment.

A. Within the limits prescribed by law, the court shall ascertain the term of confinement in the state correctional facility or in jail and the amount of fine, if any, when a person is convicted of a criminal offense, unless the accused is tried by a jury and has requested that the jury ascertain punishment. Such request for a jury to ascertain punishment shall be filed as a written pleading with the court at least 30 days prior to trial.

B. When the accused is tried by a jury, deliberations of the jury shall be confined to a determination of the guilt or innocence of the accused, except that when the ascertainment of punishment by the jury has been requested by the accused, a proceeding in accordance with § 19.2-295.1 shall apply.

C. In any case in which a jury has fixed a sentence as provided in this chapter and the sentence is modified by the court pursuant to the authority contained within this chapter, the court shall file with the record of the case a written explanation of such modification including the cause therefor.

Code 1950, §§ 19.1-291, 19.1-292; 1960, c. 366; 1975, c. 495; 2007, c. 259; 2020, Sp. Sess. I, c. 43.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.