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Texas State - TH 2360 - Class Notes - Week 3

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Texas State - TH 2360 - Class Notes - Week 3

School: Texas State University
Department: Engineering
Course: Fundamentals of Criminal Law
Professor: B.a. Dr. J. D. Elshoff
Term: Fall 2016
Tags: week3, CJ, cj2360, texasstate, texas, Austin, samhouston, Case, casestudies, study, classnotes, Fall, Read, maricelacastro, and notes
Name: Week 3 Fundamentals of Criminal Law
Description: Hey everyone! Here's the notes for week 3! Study guide is coming soon....:)
Uploaded: 09/19/2016
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background image CJ 2360.002  FUNDAMENTALS OF CRIMINAL LAW  WEEK 3  9/13/2016  Ø   CHAPTER 3-Requirement of an Act   o  Actus reus— an illegal act; the act of failure to act that constitutes the crime 
o  Mens rea— the mental state required to constitute a crime 
o  To constitute a crime, there 
must be  a joint union or operation of act and intent;  the act and intent must occur together  o  “Scienter”: strange word that means the degree of knowledge that makes a person  criminally liable for the act  o  General intent: the state of mind in which the defendant did not intend to bring  about a specific result  o  Specific intent: the state of mind used by the courts for crimes that require proof  of a particular mental state of intent or knowledge  o  Constructive intent: occurs when the defendant does not intend the harm but  should have known it created a high risk of harm  o  Transferred intent: occurs when a person intends to harm one person but instead  harms another person  o  Criminal negligence: gross deviation from the standard of care required by an  individual  o  Strict and vicarious liability: some of the mala prohibita crimes do not require  proof of culpability; mere proof the act was done is sufficient to convict an 
individual. Examples are: 
§   Selling impure or unadulterated food  §   Selling prohibited beverages to minors  §   Selling misbranded or mislabeled articles   §   Driving without a license   o  Causation  §   Causation is an implicit element of the actus reus  §   Actual cause exists if the result would not have occurred when it did in the  absences of that factor  §   Proximate cause, or the legal cause, refers to the act that was directly  responsible for the harm  §   For a criminal defendant’s conduct to be regarded as a proximate cause,  the victim’s injury must be a “direct and natural result” of the defendant’s 
actions.  
o  Legal causation: a cause recognized by law as necessary to impose criminal  liability  o  Criminal sanctions: punishments that are associated with being convicted of  crimes.  o  Culpability: blameworthiness for criminal conduct based on mens rea. 
o  Negligence: the unconscious creation of risk, or the mental state in which the 
actor unknowingly creates a substantial and unjustifiable risk of harm to others.  o  Criminal Negligence: behavior in which a person fails to reasonably perceive  substantial and unjustifiable risks of dangerous consequences.  §   Negligence of such a nature and to such a degree that it is punishable as a  crime; or flagrant and reckless disregard for the safety of others or willful 
indifference to the safety and welfare of others.  
background image CJ 2360.002  FUNDAMENTALS OF CRIMINAL LAW  WEEK 3  o  General Requirements of Culpability  §   A person is not guilty of committing an offense, unless he acts:  •  Purposely;  •  Knowingly;  •  Recklessly; or  •  Negligently  o  Model Penal Code (MPC): a model code of criminal laws developed by the  American Law Institute for the purpose of standardizing general provisions of 
criminal liability, sentencing, defenses, and the definitions of specific crimes 
between and among the states.  
o  Mala in se: crimes that are inherently bad; for example, murder, rape, and theft. 
o  Mala prohibita: acts that are crimes only because the government has declared 
them criminal. Acts that are not inherently bad. For example, hunting without a 
license.  
o  There are 2 type of PRESUMPTIONS  §   Permissible or Rebuttable  •  The fact-finder (judge or jury) may find fact B after fact A is  established.  §   Mandatory or Conclusive  •  If fact A is established, the fact-finder must accept the existence of  fact B.   Ø   Case Briefs for Chapter 3  Ø   Jones v. US (DC Cir. 1962), 308 F. 3d 307)— (There are 4 situations wherein failure to  act may constitute a breach of legal duty)  o  whether or not there was a legal duty to act  Ø   West v. Commonwealth (KY App. 1996), 935 S.W. 2d 315— (One acts “recklessly” with  respect to a result when he fails to perceive a substantial and unjustifiable risk that the 
result will occur or the circumstances exists) 
o  I— whether the common wealth error recording during the investigation  Ø   Pelayo-Garcia v. Holder (9 th  Cir. 2009), 589 F. 3d 1010— (Defendant was a male, 21 and  female was under the age of 16 years; statue had no “scienter” requirement; thus, sexual 
intercourse was a strict liability crime) 
o  California’s penal code 261.5  Ø   U.S. v. Bailey (1980), 444 U.S. 394— (Defendant of necessity to escape from federal  prison had to be based on imminence of a threat to safety, and no alternate means of 
dealing with it) 
Ø   U.S. v. Murdock (1931), 284 U.S. 141— (Defendant’s honest belief he had a right to not  answer questions was not willful, though there was no constitutional right to not answer 
questions. 
Ø   State v. Rocker (1970), 475 P.2d 684— (Intentionally exposing themselves on a public  beach was sufficient intent to offend the community’s common sense of decency.)  Ø   People v. Rideout (2006), 727 N.W. 2d 630— (The victim’s injury must be the “direct  and natural result of the defendant’s actions. Conviction reversed, as the trial court failed 
to instruct the jury as to proximate cause (victim was not killed by the defendant, but by 
later passing traffic.)) 

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School: Texas State University
Department: Engineering
Course: Fundamentals of Criminal Law
Professor: B.a. Dr. J. D. Elshoff
Term: Fall 2016
Tags: week3, CJ, cj2360, texasstate, texas, Austin, samhouston, Case, casestudies, study, classnotes, Fall, Read, maricelacastro, and notes
Name: Week 3 Fundamentals of Criminal Law
Description: Hey everyone! Here's the notes for week 3! Study guide is coming soon....:)
Uploaded: 09/19/2016
5 Pages 18 Views 14 Unlocks
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  • Notes, Study Guides, Flashcards + More!
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