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Criminal Responsibility and Defenses

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1 Criminal Responsibility and Defenses
Chapter 14 Criminal Responsibility and Defenses

2 Defenses in General Negative Defense – any criminal defense not required to be specifically pled. Burden of Production of Evidence – the obligation of a party to produce some evidence is support of a proposition asserted. Preponderance of Evidence – evidence that has greater weight than countervailing evidence.

3 Defenses in General Continued:
Affirmative Defense – defendant bears the burden of proof. (Ex. Automatism, intoxication, coercion, and duress). Burden to Prove – prove by the preponderance of the evidence that defendant acted out of necessity.

4 Defenses Asserting Lack of Capacity to Commit a Crime
Four defenses assert lack of capacity to commit a crime: 1. Infancy Common law regarded a child under 7 incapable of forming criminal intent. Parens Patriae – role of state as guardian of minors 2. Intoxication Ingestion of alcohol or drugs Voluntary intoxication – becoming drunk or intoxicated on one’s own free will. Involuntary intoxication – not the result of intentional ingestion of an intoxicating substance.

5 Defenses Asserting Lack of Capacity to Commit a Crime Continued:
3. Insanity All people are presumed sane unless previously adjudicated insane. M’Naghten Rule – must prove the defendant was suffering from disease of the mind or did not know what he was doing was wrong. Irresistible Impulse – desire that can’t be resisted due to impairment of the will by mental disease. Durham Test – person not criminally responsible if it was a product of mental disease or defect.

6 Defenses Asserting Lack of Capacity to Commit a Crime Continued:
ALI Standard or Substantial Capacity Test – person lacks substantial capacity to appreciate the wrongfulness of his conduct or to conform his conduct to the requirements of the law. Insanity Defense Reform Act of 1984 – insanity is an affirmative defense to a prosecution under a federal statute and details the requirements for establishing such a defense. Clear and convincing evidence standard – higher than the standard of preponderance of evidence and lower than the standard of beyond a reasonable doubt. Beyond a Reasonable Doubt – required to be introduced before a defendant can be found guilty of a crime or before a juvenile can be adjudicated a delinquent.

7 Defenses Asserting Lack of Capacity to Commit a Crime Continued:
Guilty but Mentally Ill – jury finds that the defendant’s mental illness does not deprive the defendant of substantial capacity sufficient to satisfy the insanity test but warrants treatment in addition to incarceration. 4. Automatism Condition under which a person performs a set of actions during a state of unconsciousness.

8 Defenses Asserting Excuse or Justification
Duress – use of illegal confinement or threats of harm to coerce someone to do something he would not otherwise do. Battered Woman Syndrome – group of symptoms typically manifested by a woman who has suffered continued physical or mental abuse, usually from a male she lives with. Necessity – condition that requires a certain course of action. Consent – voluntarily yielding to the will or desire of another person. Mistake of Law – an erroneous opinion of legal principles applied to a set of facts. Mistake of Fact – unconscious ignorance of a fact or belief in the existence of something that does not exist. Alibi – person claiming to be elsewhere when crime happened.

9 Defenses Justifying the Use of Force
Justifiable use of force – necessary and reasonable use of force by someone in self-defense, defense of another, or defense of property. Deadly force – force likely to cause death or serious bodily injury. Be in a place where he has a right to be Act without fault Act in reasonable fear of death or great bodily harm Nondeadly force – force that does not cause death.

10 Defenses Justifying the Use of Force Continued:
Self-Defense – protecting yourself from an attack. Person who can safely retreat must do so before using deadly force. Retreat Rule – person does not have to retreat in his own dwelling. Defense of Others Reasonable force – necessary to defend anyone from harm.

11 Defenses Based on Constitutional and Statutory Authority
Constitutional Immunity The privilege against self-incrimination guaranteed by the federal Constitution is a personal one that applies only to natural people, not corporations. Use Immunity – testimony given cannot be used against the witness. Transactional Immunity – protects witness from prosecution for any activity mentioned in the witness’s testimony. Contractual Immunity – makes a witness immune from prosecution in exchange for the witness’s testimony. Diplomatic Immunity – to be free from arrest and prosecution granted under international law to diplomats, their staff and household members.

12 Defenses Based on Constitutional and Statutory Authority Continued:
Double Jeopardy – can’t be tried twice for the same crime. Jeopardy attaches once the jury is sworn in. If a defendant appeals from a conviction and prevails, it is not double jeopardy for prosecution to retry the defendant, unless there is insufficient evidence – evidence that does not legally establish offense or defense.

13 Defenses Based on Constitutional and Statutory Authority Continued:
Statutes of Limitation – legislative enactment that places a time limit on the prosecution of a crime. Tolling – cessation of the statute of limitations.

14 Defenses Based on Improper Government Conduct
Entrapment – government agents inducing someone to commit a crime that person would not normally do. Objective test of entrapment – court inquires whether police methods were so improper to induce or ensnare a reasonable person into committing a crime. Subjective test of entrapment – whether defendant’s criminal intent originated in the mind of the police officer or the defendant was predisposed to commit the offense.

15 Nontraditional Defenses
Religious Beliefs and Practices Victim’s Negligence Premenstrual Syndrome Compulsive Gambling Post-Traumatic Stress Syndrome The “Junk Food” Defense Television Intoxication Pornographic Intoxication

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