Notes - Poli Sci 452 Read Chapter 4"Defendant of a criminal...

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Poli Sci 452 1-25-07 Read Chapter 4. “Defendant of a criminal case cannot be found guilty unless the state proves each element of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt.” This is the whole basis. Background things that prohibit conduct and Mens Rea: guilty mind. There’s always exceptions, but for the most part, a person may not be held responsible for a crime unless 1 st there has to be a law against it (most in statutes), and unless the person intended the act that was committed that broke the law: criminal intent. There are different ways of looking at it though, and ways of committing the act. Without this intent, there is no crime. There may not be culpability. I. “I didn’t mean to do it,” therefore, unless blameworthy (made a mistake, etc.), but if you know what you’re doing, you’re culpable. a. Even a dog (especially a cat) knows being kicked on purpose or kicking on purpose. You have to have a guilty mind. b. Do you have to intend just to do an act or also break the law and know it is not legal? There are exceptions. You are presumed to know the law. c. Mistake of fact : Illinois case in 1988, when vader got stabbed, it was a mistake of fact. He was scared and acted in self defense. It was a reasonable mistake of fact. d. Omissions : you can be found guilty for something you didn’t even do, like if you are a neglectful parents and starve your children. i. law will always hold the parent responsible. e. Intent is not the same as motive: intent is the actual intent to commit the act… if you take a car for a ride with the keys in the car, your intent is NOT to steal the car. Euthanasia: i. Put a pillow over a wealthy person’s head for money ii. Or they do it because the person is suffering iii. The motive is not relevant here, it is murder. A jury might look at it different and how mercy killing is different than murder. The law says, however that it is murder. f. If there is Mens Rea is there, there is no crime. II. There is a difference between general and specific intent a. Specific intent is: when one can gather from the circumstances of the crime that the offender must have consciously and subjectively desired the prohibited result. i. Burglary is a specific intent crime because it involves an unlawful breaking entry with the further purpose of stealing shit. Also sexual assault doing shit without their consent. b. General Intent refers to a matter of conscience wrongdoing from f which a prohibited result follows without a subjective desire for the accomplishment of that result. Or worse, a conscience commission of a crime when the result was not intended . When someone commits a bad act and someone dies as a result, it is a crime.
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i. Banks vs. Stakes is one. They never intended to kill anyone, but the bullet killed someone. If murder were a specific intent crime, they would not be guilty of murder. They did something so inherently dangerous, that they were charged. ii.
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Notes - Poli Sci 452 Read Chapter 4"Defendant of a criminal...

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