When a jury is being selected for a case in which the defendant is indicted for a crime for which the penalty is a sentence of death, the court, the defense, or the State may inform any person called to serve as a potential juror that the death penalty will be imposed upon the return of a verdict of guilty of that crime and may inquire of any person called to serve as a potential juror whether that person understands the consequences of a verdict of guilty of that crime. (1973, c. 1286, s. 12.)