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Unformatted text preview: CRIMLAW OUTLINE I.-How guilt is established--There is an ACT and an INTENT to every particular crime. -Every crime can be distinguished from other crimes by the ACT and the accompanying mental state that occurred with the act. ACTUS REUS: the act MENS REA: the mental state *the state has to prove every element of the charge, and everything after that is gratuitous Proof Beyond a Reasonable Doubt To convict an individual of a crime, there must be proof beyond a reasonable doubt for each element constituting a crime. Reasoning- far worse to convict an innocent man than to let a guilty man go free. -Have to strike a balance of how much protection against conviction of the innocent there should be. Due Process does not require that every conceivable step be taken, at whatever cost, to eliminate the possibility of convicting an innocent person. Affirmative defenses- bears burden of proving the circumstances that exonerate the of the crime; i.e., self defense, extreme emotional distress. Prosecution does not have to prove BARD that the did not act in self defense. -The jury considers whether the prosecution has proved the elements BARD, then looks at any applicable defenses. Gratuitous defense- affirmative defense that State doesnt have to allow.-As long as facts are not key to proving an element of a crime, state can decide who has burden of proof and be within the constitution.-Example Patterson- asserting defense of extreme emotional distress against murder charge but EED is element of manslaughter. By successfully defending the murder charge, basically admitting the manslaughter. It was OK b/c NY didnt have to extend the EED defense at all and would have been convicted of murder if NY didnt have EED defense. * gratuitous claims for defenses do not have to be disproved by the state, but rather state legislatures can force gratuitous claims to be proven by the defense, thus shifting the burden of proof (or contrary, the State can determine the prosecution does not need to answer a gratuitous defense at all) What constitutes an element of a crime ? MPC 1.13- includes conduct, attendant circumstances or results that are included in the description of the offense, that negates an excuse or justification for an offense, or that negates a defense under the S of L or establishes j/d or venue. proportionality: to differentiate on reasonable grounds between serious and minor offenses Murder 2: 1. intent to cause the death of another person; and 2. caused the death of such person or a third person Manslaughter same elements of Murder 2; and acted with sever emotional disturbance (in the heat of passion) this is an affirmative defense that does not have to be disproved by the prosecution for Murder 2, it must be proved by the defense to lessen the charge to Manslaughter *new offense, codification of a traditional of a traditional common law offense II.-The Justification of Punishment- The Criminal Justice system is an apparatus society uses to enforce standards of conduct to protect individuals and the community. Freedom-preserving device- people give up the right to engage in criminal behavior so that...
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This note was uploaded on 04/18/2011 for the course LAW 101 taught by Professor Many during the Spring '11 term at University of Louisville.
- Spring '11