New User Special Price Expires in

Let's log you in.

Sign in with Facebook


Don't have a StudySoup account? Create one here!


Create a StudySoup account

Be part of our community, it's free to join!

Sign up with Facebook


Create your account
By creating an account you agree to StudySoup's terms and conditions and privacy policy

Already have a StudySoup account? Login here

Chapter 3

by: Allison Voss

Chapter 3 212

Allison Voss

Preview These Notes for FREE

Get a free preview of these Notes, just enter your email below.

Unlock Preview
Unlock Preview

Preview these materials now for free

Why put in your email? Get access to more of this material and other relevant free materials for your school

View Preview

About this Document

everything for chapter 3
Criminal Law
Lisa Schaefer
Class Notes
25 ?




Popular in Criminal Law

Popular in Leja

This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Allison Voss on Wednesday October 5, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to 212 at Western Illinois University taught by Lisa Schaefer in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 2 views. For similar materials see Criminal Law in Leja at Western Illinois University.


Reviews for Chapter 3


Report this Material


What is Karma?


Karma is the currency of StudySoup.

You can buy or earn more Karma at anytime and redeem it for class notes, study guides, flashcards, and more!

Date Created: 10/05/16
Chapter 3 Criminal Law: The Criminal Act: Voluntary act is the first principle of criminal liability:  In order to have criminal liability there must be criminal conduct  Criminal conduct is conduct that is without justification or excuse  Voluntary act is the “conduct” part of criminal conduct  Many crimes don’t include a criminal intent or bad result, but only rarely does a crime  not require a criminal act (strict liability) Elements of Criminal Liability:  Actus Reus—the criminal act  Mens rea—the criminal intent  Concurrence—the requirement that the criminal intent trigger the criminal act  Attendant circumstances (when a crime does not require the mens rea, it generally  requires some attendant circumstance)  Bad result causing a criminal harm  Corpus delicti = “body of crime” but it doesn’t necessarily mean a physical body.  It  refers, instead to the elements of a crime  Criminal act = voluntary bodily movement.  Criminal conduct = criminal act triggered by the criminal intent (Cf. criminal liability =  criminal conduct that qualifies for punishment, i.e. no justification/excuse)  Conduct crimes = crimes which require a criminal act triggered by criminal intent  Attendant circumstances element – sometimes a specific mens rea is not required, there must, however, be a circumstance present that is connected to the act, the intent, or the  result o Examples – OWI/DUI  Bad result crimes o Some serious offenses include all five elements o Voluntary act (criminal act) o Mental element (criminal intent) o Circumstance element o Causation o Harm  Criminal Homicide is an example of bad result crime The Criminal Act: The First Principle of Liability:  Punish people for what they do, not who they are  Punish people for what they do, not what they think  Manifest criminality—in order to have criminality, attitudes have to turn into deeds.   Deeds leave no doubt about the criminal nature of the act Voluntary Act Requirement:  Voluntary Act – conduct that includes a voluntary act satisfies the voluntary act  requirement   “One voluntary act is enough” rule  Voluntary act is an absolute requirement for criminal liability  Automatism ­ unconscious bodily movements, i.e. a bodily movement that is not the  product of the effort or determination of the actor  Fault­Based Defenses ­ based on creating a reasonable doubt about the prosecution’s  proof of a voluntary act  Affirmative Defenses ­ defenses of excuse for criminal liability, which take place after  the prosecution has proved the defendant’s criminal conduct Status, Actus Reus, and the Constitution:  Status­character or condition of a person or thing  Most status do not qualify as actus reus  Status can, however, result from voluntary act o Example:  meth addicts voluntarily use meth the first time, and alcoholics  voluntarily take their first drink  Some conditions (status) result from no act at all—we are born with those  characteristics/conditions: sex, age, race, ethnicity Compare Robinson with Powell:  California statute created crime of personal condition.  It punished Robinson for being an  addict, not for what he did.  90­day sentence was held unconstitutional because it  punished him for his sickness.  Decision brought other statutes into question.  Texas statute made it a crime to be found drunk in public.  Court distinguished Robinson  and said that Powell was being convicted for voluntarily being in public.  Very close case (plurality decision). Omissions as Criminal Acts:  Failing to act can satisfy the voluntary act requirement  Criminal omissions  o Failure to act  Failure to report something required o Failure to intervene to protect person or property  Omissions are only criminal if there is a legal duty to act  Legal duties to act arise in several ways o Statute provides the duty to act  Example: duty to report child abuse  Contract provides the duty to act  Example: law enforcement, fire fighters  Special relationship provides the duty to act  Example: parent­child  NOTE: sometimes a special relationship is created by assuming the care of another (see People v. Oliver)  Criminal omissions cannot arise out of failure to perform moral duties  Most states impose no duty to render aid to an imperiled stranger or call for help  Good Samaritan Doctrine – creates (statutory) duty for stranger to render aid  o Only a few states  American Bystander Approach—no legal duty to rescue or summon help for someone  in danger even if there is no risk in doing so o Most states follow this approach Possession as a Criminal Act:  Possession is not an act, it’s a passive condition  Legal fiction makes possession a voluntary act  Criminal possessions include possession of: (see list) o illegal weapons, illegal drugs, drug paraphernalia  o alcohol by minors…  Reason we engage in legal fiction of pretending possession is an act: o is in our desire to prevent worse crimes o most people get possession through a voluntary act Kinds of Possessions:  Actual possession—having actual physical control (the item is located on the person)  Constructive possession—the person has the dominion and control of the item, but it is  not on their person  Actual and Constructive possession can take two forms: Knowing possession or mere  possession  Knowing possession—person is aware what they have on them or what it is that they  have control over o Most states require possession to be knowing to be criminal act  Mere possession—person is not aware what they have on them or what they have control over o Either don’t know they have it, or don’t know what it is they have  o Only two states hold that mere possession can be a criminal act


Buy Material

Are you sure you want to buy this material for

25 Karma

Buy Material

BOOM! Enjoy Your Free Notes!

We've added these Notes to your profile, click here to view them now.


You're already Subscribed!

Looks like you've already subscribed to StudySoup, you won't need to purchase another subscription to get this material. To access this material simply click 'View Full Document'

Why people love StudySoup

Bentley McCaw University of Florida

"I was shooting for a perfect 4.0 GPA this semester. Having StudySoup as a study aid was critical to helping me achieve my goal...and I nailed it!"

Jennifer McGill UCSF Med School

"Selling my MCAT study guides and notes has been a great source of side revenue while I'm in school. Some months I'm making over $500! Plus, it makes me happy knowing that I'm helping future med students with their MCAT."

Jim McGreen Ohio University

"Knowing I can count on the Elite Notetaker in my class allows me to focus on what the professor is saying instead of just scribbling notes the whole time and falling behind."


"Their 'Elite Notetakers' are making over $1,200/month in sales by creating high quality content that helps their classmates in a time of need."

Become an Elite Notetaker and start selling your notes online!

Refund Policy


All subscriptions to StudySoup are paid in full at the time of subscribing. To change your credit card information or to cancel your subscription, go to "Edit Settings". All credit card information will be available there. If you should decide to cancel your subscription, it will continue to be valid until the next payment period, as all payments for the current period were made in advance. For special circumstances, please email


StudySoup has more than 1 million course-specific study resources to help students study smarter. If you’re having trouble finding what you’re looking for, our customer support team can help you find what you need! Feel free to contact them here:

Recurring Subscriptions: If you have canceled your recurring subscription on the day of renewal and have not downloaded any documents, you may request a refund by submitting an email to

Satisfaction Guarantee: If you’re not satisfied with your subscription, you can contact us for further help. Contact must be made within 3 business days of your subscription purchase and your refund request will be subject for review.

Please Note: Refunds can never be provided more than 30 days after the initial purchase date regardless of your activity on the site.