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Murder in the US

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Murder in the US

Postby diy » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:21 pm

I'm struggling with this one, currently watching a TV programme about the American Justice system.

A and B decide to rob C in his home armed with guns. D who lives next door hears the robbery and comes to aid C. D shoots A & B, B dies. D's defence of self defence is accepted and he is not charged. A is charged with the murder of B as he is held responsible for the death.

This seams very difficult to me. I'd have thought A had no Mens Rea and B probably accepted the risks - cannot see how A has murdered B.
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Re: Murder in the US

Postby atticus » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:43 pm

Which country's laws are we discussing here?
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Re: Murder in the US

Postby diy » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:59 pm

United States.
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Re: Murder in the US

Postby 3.14 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:59 pm

The US try to discourage 'vigilante' action.
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Re: Murder in the US

Postby Smouldering Stoat » Tue Mar 21, 2017 10:04 pm

Murder isn't a federal crime in the US. There's no reason to suppose that the law on joint enterprise would be the same across the states, let alone with the UK.
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Re: Murder in the US

Postby shootist » Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:59 am

I watched the same program. I can see the logic. Two youths engage in an unlawful enterprise that results in one of them being lawfully killed. In a sense he has contributed towards the death of his partner in crime while committing a criminal act.
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Re: Murder in the US

Postby dls » Wed Mar 22, 2017 5:36 am

I did not see it. Atti is right, the laws will vary from state to state and the logic is not paralled here.

I think a big diferenceis the use of gradations of murder. We do not have that in teh same way. We have murder and manslaughter, but that is more or less all. The US has murder by different degrees, and therefore and additional over layer of rules.

We have had our own difficulties with the law of joint enterprise - liabilit forcriminalact of a co-offender.
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Re: Murder in the US

Postby atticus » Wed Mar 22, 2017 7:33 am

Credit should go to stoaty, not me. I was just trying to get the OP to think.
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Re: Murder in the US

Postby diy » Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:25 am

The point is that one robber was being tried for Murdering his fellow robber, when the fellow robber was actually shot "lawfully" by the neighbour who "defended" (see footnote) the person being robbed. It was the state of Florida. I'm am broadly familiar with the different classes of murder, but at best can see (according to their own definition) this was involuntary manslaughter. i.e. he carried out a course of conduct (armed burglary) that he should have none (being in a gun owning country) might have put his and his partner in crime at risk of being killed.

Note: In any case the Jury acquitted, but from what I can see this was down to a lack of credible testimony from the prosecution witnesses as they seemed to know each other, so it wasn't a straightforward robbery.
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Re: Murder in the US

Postby atticus » Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:36 am

Does the OP understand that this forum discusses UK law? None of us have any detailed knowledge of the laws of the State of Florida.
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