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  • 8/10/2019 Crim Law Greenberg



    I. Voluntary/Involuntary Acts

    A. MPC

    1. Conduct must includea. a voluntary actor

    b. the o!ss!on to "#r$or an act o$ %&!c& !s "&ys!cally ca"abl#2. Involuntary acts are

    a. r#$l#' or convuls!on,b. bo!ly ov##nt ur!n unconsc!ousn#ss or sl##",c. &y"nos!s,. boy ov##nt t&at !s not a "rouct o$ t #$$ort or #t#r!nat!on o$ t actor* #!tr

    consc!ous or &ab!tual

    II. O!ss!ons

    A. MPC

    1. No liability for omissions unless

    a. o!ss!ons ar# #'"r#ssly a# su$$!c!#nt by t la%, orb. a uty to "#r$or t act !s r#+u!r# by la%

    B. Tra!t!onal Rul#, A person has no criminal law duty to act to prevent harm to another, even if the person

    imperiled may lose her life in the absence of assistance. This distinuishes between !causin" and!preventin" harm.

    -. Duty !s cr#at# $or o!ss!ons by,

    a. relationshipb. contract to provide carec. creation of ris#d. voluntary assumption of care that isolates the individual

    e. statutory dutiesf. duty to control conduct of another. bad $amaritan laws.

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    A. MPC S#ct!on .0. 1#n#ral R#+u!r##nts o$ Cul"ab!l!ty

    %Ta#es an &elemental& approach to mens rea%%Inores the common law distinction of &eneral& and &specific& intent%%% 'efault is rec#lessness

    Pur"os#ly( Conscious desire)ob*ect to enae in certain conduct or cause a certain result. +ersonacts purposefully with reard to attendant circumstances if she hopes that that they eist, or if shebelieves or is aware that they eist. Necessary for !specific intent" crimes.

    2no%!nly, Actor is aware that his actions are illeal or illeal result is !practically certain to

    follow from his conduct." Need #nowlede of eternal circumstances.

    R#c3l#ssly, Conscious disreard of a substantial and un*ustified ris# that will result from his

    conduct. $ubstantial and un*ustified involves a ross deviation from the standard of conduct that alaw-abidin person would observe in the actors situation.

    N#l!#ntly, !$hould be aware& that a substantial and un*ustified ris# eists or will result from his

    conduct. /easonable person would have been aware of the ris#. 'istinuished from the others inthat it does not involve a state of awareness. A person is nelient when he !inadvertently creates asubstantial and un*ustifiable ris# of which he ouht to be aware." 0i#e in rec#lessness, the ris#must be substantial and un*ustifiable. hether he ouht to have been aware of it depends onwhether in the circumstances a reasonable person would have eercised care in the situation ivenderee of ris#, purpose of actor3s conduct, circumstances #nown to him4.

    Cul"ab!l!ty R#+u!r# Unl#ss Otr%!s# Prov!#. hen the culpability sufficient to establish a

    material element of an offense is not prescribed by law, such element is established if a person actspurposely, #nowinly, or rec#lessly with respect thereto.

    Pr#scr!b# Cul"ab!l!ty R#+u!r##nt A""l!#s to All Mat#r!al El##nts . hen the law definin

    an offense prescribes the #ind of culpability that is sufficient for the commission of an offense,without distinuishin amon the material elements thereof, such provision shall apply to all thematerial elements of the offense, unless a contrary purpose plainly appears

    4. T%o #an!ns o$Mens Rea,

    1. 5eneral sense( It is sufficient that he committed it in a manner that demonstrated bad character,malevolence, and immorality

    2. 6lemental sense( particular to the specific element of the crime. A person can have eneral mensrea, but not satisfy the elemental mens rea, and wont be uilty.

    C. 1#n#ral v. S"#c!$!c Int#nt

    1. 5eneral Intent( A crime that isnt &specific.& 7ost crimes are eneral.

    2. $pecific Intent( Includes an intent or purpose to do some future act, or to achieve some further

    conse8uence beyond the conduct or result that constitutes the actus reus of the offense . The actormust be aware of a statutory attendant circumstance. burlary4

    9. The 7+C proposes doin away with these distinctions

  • 8/10/2019 Crim Law Greenberg


    Conduct Circumstances /esult $tandard

    +urposely Consciousob*ective to enaein act

    :nowlede ofcircumstancesre8uired

    Conscious ob*ectiveto cause the harm


    :nowinly Aware that conduct

    is illeal

    :nowlede of


    Aware that illeal

    result is !practicallycertain to follow fromconduct"


    /ec#lessnessawareness ofa ris#4

    /e8uires awarenessof a ris# andconscious disreardof it

    Consciouslydisreardssubstantial andun*ustifiable ris#

    Consciouslydisreards substantialand un*ustifiable ris#


    Nelientlyno state ofawarenessneeded4

    hen inadvertentlycreates substantialand un*ustifiableris# of which heouht to have been


    $ame $ame ;b*ective

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    A. D#$!n!t!on,A crime that does not conta!n a mens rear#+u!r##ntreardin one or more of the elements

    of actus reus

    4. MPC .06

    1. Rul#( There is no strict liability. 7ens rea and actus reus must be proven to be uilty of a crime.

    2. E'c#"t!on( There is strict liability for offenses raded as &violations& rather than &crimes&

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    a. Rul#, 7ista#e of fact is only a defense if the mista#e is reasonable ob*ective4. It is not adefense if the mista#e is unreasonable.

    b. E'a"l#( ' has se with

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    B. MPC(

    -. Rul#( 7ista#e of law is not a defense. E'c#"t!ons,

    a. /easonable reliance doctrine( A persons belief that he conduct is lawful is a defense if(i. $he relies on an official, but erroneous statement of the law, and

    ii. The statemt of law is found ini. a statute or other enactment

    ii. a *udicial decision, opinion, or *udmentiii. an administrative order or rant of permissioniv. an official interpretation of the public officer or body chared by law with

    responsibility for the interpretation, administration or enforcement of thelaw definin the offense, and

    iii. The reliance is otherwise reasonable

    a. @air notice doctrine( A persons belief that he conduct is lawful is a defense if(i. It is not #nown to her, and

    ii. It was not published or otherwise reasonably made available to her before she

    bro#e the law

    C. Tra!t!onal(1. 1#n#ral Rul#,7ista#e of law is not a defense. People v. arrero !Even reliance on one"s own reasonable interpretation of the law is not a

    defense. 7arrero '4, a federal corrections officer, was convicted of unlawful possession of apistol under a statute containin an eemption for !peace officers." The statutory definition of!peace officers" included !correction officers of any state correction facility or any penalcorrectional institution." 7arrero claimed that he relied on interpretations of fellow officers andteachers, as well as the lanuae of the statute itself, in formin his belief that he could carry apistol. >e was uilty anyway.

    . E'c#"t!onsa. R#asonabl# r#l!anc# octr!n#

    i. Rul#, /easonable reliance upon an official statement of the law, but laterdetermined erroneous, obtained from a person with responsibility of interpretin,enforcin, or administerin the law is a defense.

    ii. @or it to be official, it must be(1. A statute later declared invalid2. A *udicial decision of the hihest court in the *urisdiction, later determined

    to be erroneous9. An official, but erroneous, interpretation secured from a public officer

    with responsibility of interpretin, enforcin, or administerin the lawAttorney 5eneral4.

    iii. /eliance on ones own reasonable interpretation of the law is not a defense seeabove4

    #nited $tates v. Albertini( Albertini '4 had enaed in a peace demonstration on a

    >awaii naval base after bein barred from enterin the installation by itscommander. >is entry constituted a violation of ?$ Code, and he was convicted ofthe offense. ;n appeal, the Hth Circuit reversed the conviction in !Albertini I", onthe rounds that the 1st Amendment protected Albertini3s riht to demonstrate atthe base. After the reversal, Albertini demonstrated several more times. $upreme

  • 8/10/2019 Crim Law Greenberg


    Court eventually reversed Hth Circuit3s decision in Albertini I. 5overnment thenpressed its prosecution on the second roup of demonstrations and obtained aconviction.

    b. Lambert

    i. ' was a 0A resident and a felon. There was a statute re8uirin e-felons to

    reister, but she didnt, because she didnt #now the law. $upreme Court said thatshe wasnt uilty, even thouh not #nowin the law is almost never a defense. Tobe interpreted eceedinly strictly, $C loo#ed at(

    1. >er act was an omission, not an affirmative act2. >er duty to act was imposed on basis of status, not an activity9. The offense was malum in prohibitum.

    c. Collat#ral M!sta3# o$ a%,'s lac# of #nowlede of, or misunderstandin as to the

    meanin or application of, another law, usually non-penal, neates the mens reafound inthe definition of the crime.

    i. $pecific intent crimes1. %heek v. #$( ', an anti-ta activist, failed ot file ta returns, despite

    receivin waes each year. >e was chared with &wilfully& failin to filetaes. >e willfuly did this, but, after attendin seminars, he actuallybelieved that &waes& werent &income,& so he didnt report them.$upreme Court found that if he really believed that waes werent income,he couldnt be uilty.

    ii. 5eneral intent1. Rul#, The