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Chapter 8 – Introduction to Criminal Law Most crimes require an act to be committed accompanied by a guilty state of mind, meaning that the illegal action.

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Presentation on theme: "Chapter 8 – Introduction to Criminal Law Most crimes require an act to be committed accompanied by a guilty state of mind, meaning that the illegal action."— Presentation transcript:

1 Chapter 8 – Introduction to Criminal Law Most crimes require an act to be committed accompanied by a guilty state of mind, meaning that the illegal action was taken intentionally. For instance, if you accidentally take the umbrella of another person while leaving a restaurant, there is no crime, because you did not have a guilty state of mind. State of mind, is different from motive, which is the reason why someone performs an illegal act. Motive is not necessarily a defense for a crime.

2 Chapter 8 – Introduction to Criminal Law There are a few crimes that do not require state of mind. These crimes are called strict liability. The classic example of a strict liability law is that a cashier does not need to know that he is selling alcohol to a minor to be found guilty.

3 Chapter 8 – Introduction to Criminal Law Any crime also is made up of elements. An element is the pieces of action that make up a specific crime. The elements of robbery are (1) taking someone stuff (2) taking it from their person and (3) using force or intimidation.

4 Chapter 8 – Introduction to Criminal Law To be found guilty of robbery, you must be guilty of all three. Someone who breaks into your home while you are not there is not a robber, because they are not taking anything from your person or using force or intimidation. The same person would be guilty of burglary, but not robbery.

5 Chapter 8 – Introduction to Criminal Law Crimes are divided into to major categories: Felonies are punishable by over one year. Misdemeanors are punishable by one year or less.

6 Chapter 8 – Introduction to Criminal Law There are also four types of parties to crimes: 1.A principal is the person who commits the crime. 2.An accomplice is someone who helps the person commit the crime. 3. An accessory before the fact is someone who helps plan a crime but is not there at the time the crime is committed. 4. An accessory after the fact is someone who helps a criminal avoid being captured.

7 Chapter 8 – Introduction to Criminal Law A crime of omission is committed when someone fails to perform an act required by law, for example not filing your taxes.

8 Chapter 8 – Introduction to Criminal Law Preliminary crimes, are behaviors that happen before a crime is committed but are a crime themselves: Soclicitation is asking someone to commit a crime for you. Attempt is often a crime. To be guilty of attempt you must intend to commit a crime and take some substantial step to commit that crime. Conspiract is an agreement between two or more persons to commit a crime.


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