Criminal Conduct and Criminal Law

Topics: Criminal law, Crime, Law Pages: 2 (1471 words) Published: October 26, 2014

Heather E. Dahl 05/07/2014 Strayer University Professor Aryka N. Moore Assignment 1 Week 4: Criminal Conduct and Criminal Law Determine whether or not a conviction is feasible when an alleged perpetrator does not have the required mens rea but has engaged in the actus rea. Provide a rationale to support your position. Crime has been a part of American history for years and will continue to be for all time. Criminal laws regulate human conduct and tell people what they can and cannot do and, in some instances, what they must do under certain circumstances. Often time’s people do not follow the laws that are put into place in order to protect them and that is where crimes tend to be committed. Mens rea is known as a guilty mind; a guilty or wrongful purpose; a criminal intent; Guilty knowledge and willfulness. In criminal law men’s rea is the basic principle that a crime consists of a mental element as well as a physical element. A person's awareness of the fact that his or her conduct is criminal is the mental element, and actus reus, the act itself is the physical element. The concept of mens rea started its development in the 1600s in England when judges started to say that an act alone could not create criminality unless it was adjunct with a guilty state of mind. The degree for a particular common law crime varied for mens rea. Murder required a malicious state of mind, whereas larceny required a felonious state of mind. Men’s Rea is generally used along with the words general intent, however this creates confusion since general intent is used to describe criminal liability when a defendant does not intend to bring about a particular result. On the other hand specific intent describes a particular state of mind...

References: Gardner, T., & Anderson, T. (2012). Criminal law (11th ed.). Belmont, CA: Thomson
Wadsworth / Cengage.
Martinez, J. S. (2007). Understanding Mens Rea in Command Responsibility. Journal Of
International Criminal Justice, 5(3), 638-664. doi:10.1093/jicj/mqrn031
Rudd, J. L. (2008). Diplomatic Immunity. FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin, 77(2), 25-32.
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