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Mens Rea Outline

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This is an extract of our Mens Rea document, which we sell as part of our Criminal Law Outlines collection written by the top tier of Cuny School Of Law students.

The following is a more accessble plain text extract of the PDF sample above, taken from our Criminal Law Outlines. Due to the challenges of extracting text from PDFs, it will have odd formatting:

I.

Mens Rea

1. Nature of Mens Rea

1. United States v. Cordoba-Hincapie

1. Generally, a "guilty mind." Acting with a general purpose

2. Regina v. Cunningham

1. Appellant had removed a gas meter from a basement, but had failed to disengage the gas pipe, endangering the life of an older woman who lived in the house.

2. Lower court instructed the jury that "malicious" merely meant acting wickedly.

3. Appellate judge disagreed, ruling that malicious must mean, in the absence of specific intent, the knowledge of the likely consequences of one's actions

2. Culpability

1. Intent

1. People v. Conley

1. Defendant had meant to hit one individual with a wine bottle, but ended up hitting and injuring another.

2. Defendant argues that the statute requires an intent to cause the specific injuries set forth in the statute.

3. Court finds that the state need not prove that the defendant intended to cause the specific injuries, but may rely on the likely consequences of one's actions.

2. General (3 uses of each)

1. Only wickedness is required

2. Recklessness or Negligence

3. A mens rea that only relates to the actus reus (common law)

3. Specific (3 uses of each)

1. Specific elements of a crime

2. The mens rea defined in the statute

3. Common law

1. The intention to commit some future act (with intent to sell) Comparison of NYPL, MPC and Common Law Approaches to Culpability NYPL

1. Intentional - A person acts intentionally with respect to a result or to conduct described by a statue defining an offense when his conscious objective is to cause such result or to engage in such conduct.

MPC

1. Purposely - A person acts purposely with respect to a material element of an offense when: (i) if the element involves the nature of his conduct or a result thereof, it is his conscious object to engage in conduct of that nature or to cause such a result; and

2. Knowledge - A person (ii) if the element involves acts knowingly with respect the attendant to conduct or to a circumstances, he is aware circumstance described by a of the existence of such statute defining an offense circumstances or he believes when he is aware that his or hopes that they exist. conduct is of such nature or that such circumstances exist.

2. Knowledge -A person

Common Law

1. General Intent - A mens rea that only relates to the actus reus

2. Specific Intent a. The intention to commit some future act (with intent to sell) b. Special motive or purpose for committing the actus reus (with the intent to cause humilation) c. Proof of the actor's awareness of a situation (known to be under the age of 18 years.)

acts knowingly with respect to a material she:

3. Recklessness - A person (i) if the element involves acts recklessly with respect the nature of his conduct or to a result or to a the attendant circumstance described by a circumstances, he is aware statute defining an offense that his conduct is of that when he is aware of and nature or that such consciously disregards a circumstances exist; and substantial and unjustifiable (ii) if the element involves a risk that such result will result of his conduct, he is occur or that such aware that it is practically circumstance exists. The certain that his conduct will Risk must be of such nature cause such a result. and degree that disregard thereof constitutes a gross deviation from the standard 3. Recklessness - A person of conduct that a reasonable acts recklessly with respect person would observe in the to a material element of an situation. A person who offense when he consciously creates such a risk but is disregards a substantial and unaware thereof solely by unjustifiable risk that the reason of voluntary material element exists or intoxication also acts will result from his conduct. recklessly with respect The risk must be of such a thereto. nature and degree that, considering the nature and purpose of the actor's

4. Negligence - A person conduct and the acts with criminal circumstances known to negligence with respect to a him, its disregard involves a result or to a circumstance gross deviation from the described by a statute standard of conduct that a defining an offense when he law-abiding person would fails to perceive a observe in the actor's substantial and unjustifiable situation. risk that such result will occur or that such circumstance exists. THe

4. Negligence - A person risk must be of such nature acts negligently with respect and degree that the failure to a material element of an to perceive it constitutes a offense when he should be gross deviation from the aware of a substantial and standard of care that a unjustifiable risk that the reasonable person would material element exists or observe in the situation. will result form his conduct. The risk must be of such a nature and degree that the actor's failure to perceive it, considering the nature and purpose of his conduct and the circumstances known to him, involves a gross deviation from the standard

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