Presentation on theme: "Criminal Law Chapter 3 The General Principles of Criminal Liability: Actus Reus Joel Samaha, 9th Ed."— Presentation transcript:
1 Criminal Law Chapter 3 The General Principles of Criminal Liability: Actus Reus Joel Samaha, 9th Ed.
2 Elements of a Crime Criminal act (actus reus) Criminal intent (mens rea)Concurrence (“an act set in motion by an intent”)Attendant circumstancesBad result or harm
3 All crimes have to include, a criminal act (actus reus). at a minimum,a criminal act (actus reus).
4 Questions What is an attendant circumstance? Give an example. Explain the concept of acriminal conduct crime?
5 Criminal Liability Actus reus (criminal act) We punish people for what they do, not for what they intend to do (state of mind), or for who they are (status). Key term: manifest criminalityMen's rea (criminal intent)Punishment(at least for serious crimes) depends on the blameworthiness of the intent that triggers the criminal actConcurrenceCriminal intent (mens rea) has to trigger criminal acts (actus reus) and cause criminal harm
6 Factors Which Affect Actus Reus Voluntary actsStatus or conditionConstitutionCriminal omissionsCriminal possessions
7 Voluntary Acts“A person is not guilty of an offense unless his liability is based on conduct that includes a voluntary act…” (ALI 1985, § 2.01).So long as there’s one voluntary act, other acts surrounding the crime may be involuntary.What are the facts and opinion of Brown v. State (955 S.W.2d 276, Texas 1997)?
8 Status or Condition and the Consititution Action describes what we do, status (or condition) denotes who we are. Most statuses or conditions do not qualify as actus reus.Status can arise in two ways:1) From prior voluntary acts, such as drinking alcohol or using drugs2) Being who we are: sex, age, sexual orientation, race/ethnicityIt is unconstitutional for the legislature to make a crime out of status or personal conditions.What are the facts and opinion of Robinson v. California (1962, 370 U.S. 660)? Is actus reus a constitutional command?
9 Criminal Omission 1) failure to report Two types:1) failure to report2) failure to intervene; e.g., legal dutyLegal duty:1) Statutes, e.g., income tax returns and firearms registration2) Contracts, e.g., law enforcement officers3) Special relationships, e.g., parent-child and doctor-patient
10 Questions What is the difference between the Good Samaritan Doctrine and theAmerican Bystander Rule ?What are the facts and opinionsof the following cases ?Commonwealth v. Pestinakas617 A.2d 1339 (1992, Pa. Sup.)People v. Oliver (1989)State v. Miranda (1998)
11 Possession Explain the facts and opinion of Miller v. State (1999). Possession is not action; it is a passive condition. Examples of criminal possession statutes are burglary tools, stolen property, illegal drugs and weapons.The passive state of possession as actus reus includes:1) control of items and substances, e.g., actual possession or constructive possession2) awareness of control, e.g., knowing possession or mere possessionExplain the facts and opinion of Miller v. State (1999).