What are the Five elements of a crime?
1. Conduct by the D that includes a voluntary act (or an omission to act when the actor had a duty)
2. Must be social harm
3. Must be mens rea
4. Must be actual causation
5. Must be proximate causation
What is a voluntary act (common law)?
A willed muscular contraction.
What does Purposefully mean?
If it was the actor's conscious objective to cause that result
What does Knowingly mean?
If a person is aware that the result in question is virtually certain to occur as a result of his conduct.
What does Recklessly mean?
A person acts recklessly if a person consciously takes a substantial and unjustifiable risk of causing the particular harm that occurred.
What does Negligently mean?
A person acts negligently if a person should have been aware that he is taking a substantial and unjustifiable risk of causing the particular harm that occurred.
What does Unjustifiable risk taking mean?
A person unjustifiably takes the risk if a reasonable person would not have taken that risk.
What does Substantial mean?
Completely unreasonable behavior. Grossly out of line and extreme.
What does Consciously mean?
Aware of the risk, but goes ahead anyway.
What is the definition of Common law term intention?
A person has acted purposefully and knowingly.
What is Mistake of Fact?
Morally innocent state of mind.
What constitutes common law Duress?
When one committed the crime because another person threatened him or a third person with imminent death or serious bodily harm.
What constitutes MPC Duress?
It is an affirmative defense that the actor engaged in criminal conduct because he was coerced to do so by the use of or the threat to use unlawful force against his person or a person of another. A threat that person of reasonable firmness in his situation would have been unable to resist.
What is the definition of Homicide?
The killing of a human being by a human being. (includes suicide)
What is the Actus Reus of homicide?
The killing of a human being by another human being.
How is human being defined in the common law?
Common law: an entity does not become a human being for the homicide definition until the person is born alive. (Keeler case, struck wife in the abdomen killing the fetus - this is not murder in the common law). A number of states have modified the definition of human being.
How is human being defined under the MPC?
A person who has been born and is alive. A person was considered dead when there was a permanent cessation of breathing and heart beat. Today, almost every state has enlarged the definition for death to deal with life support machinery. Now they use brain death: a brain in its entirety has ceased to perform.
How is Common Law Murder defined?
Murder requires that the actor performed the killing with malice aforethought. At common law there were NO DEGREES of murder.
How is Malice defined?
Four states of mind that we call human endangering states of mind. If any one is shown to exist, then there is malice. (intent, grievous bodily injury, depraved heart, felony murder rule)
How is Intent defined?
If a human purposefully killed or knew to a substantially certainty that his action would kill a human being, then there is malice aforethought.
What is meant by the term Grievous bodily injury?
An injury that imperils life. Injury that severely or interferes with the victim's health and comfort.
What is meant by Depraved heart: Abandoned and malignant heart?
An utter callousness to the value of human life. Extreme recklessness. "I don't give a damn about human life." - Georgia court.
What is the Felony Murder Rule?
Kill someone during the commission or attempted commission of a felony (including flight) - then there is malice aforethought. Doesn't matter the mens rea of the person.
How do you define inherently dangerous?
If it was committed in a manner dangerous to human life.
Does the crime, in the abstract by it's very nature, necessarily carries a high probability of loss of life?
What is meant by Willfull?
Willful: Killing was done intentionally
What is meant by Deliberate?
To measure and evaluate what you are doing (weighing the pros and cons of killing someone) a thought process undisturbed by emotion
What is meant by Pre-meditated?
Pre-meditate (grey area great for the exam): to think about beforehand (some courts feel that a split second is enough for first degree murder - therefore they don't have manslaughter. Other courts feel that it must be longer than a split second, at least long enough to deliberate)
What constitutes Second Degree Murder?
All other kinds of murder are second degree murder. Know all of the common law murders, take out the first degree murders and what you have left is second degree murder.
What is special about MPC Murder?
Does not have malice aforethought. Does not have degrees of murder.
What constitutes MPC Murder?
A person is guilty of murder under the MPC if the person kills another individual purposefully or knowingly or recklessly in a manner manifesting extreme indifference to the value of human life.
What is the MPC Felony Murder Rule?
There isn't a felony murder rule. But if there was a killing during a commission of a MPC felony, and the action was reckless - could get them for murder that way.
What are the elements of Common Law Manslaughter?
An unlawful killing of a human being by another human being without malice aforethought.
What are the elements of Heat of Passion?
D showed that he killed because of adequate provocation
Occurred during the heat of passion
Occurred before the actor had a reasonable opportunity to cool off.
What is meant by Adequate provocation?
Provocation that might render an ordinary person of average temperament liable to act irrationally. And thus without due deliberation.
What constitutes MPC Manslaughter?
A killing committed purposefully or knowingly or recklessly in a manner manifesting extreme indifference to the value of human life, which occurs as a result of extreme mental or emotional disturbance for which there is a reasonable explanation or excuse.
What is meant by criminal negligence?
A killing that occurs because of criminal negligence (a commission of a lawful act which might produce death committed in an unlawful manner without due caution and circumspection).
Basically a lot of words saying that the killing involved was otherwise a lawful act but done in a dangerous way (a criminally negligent manner).
What is the Misdemeanor Manslaughter Rule (aka Unlawful Act Version of Manslaughter)?
An unintended homicide that occurs during the commission of an unlawful act, not amounting to a felony, constitutes common law involuntary manslaughter. (If it was intended there would be malice aforethought.)
What constitutes MPC Negligent Homicide?
If a person negligently kills another person, not recklessly but negligently, the MPC drops that to a lower crime than murder or manslaughter. They have created a crime called Negligent Homicide. MPC has three crimes: murder, manslaughter, and negligent homicide.
What constitutes Common Law Rape?
Sexual intercourse by a male with a female not his wife without her consent.