• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Notes on the law on murder

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

´╗┐Murder There are three types of unlawful homicide: murder, voluntary and involuntary manslaughter. The degree of seriousness applied to each offence is essentially a reflection of the defendant?s state of mind. With regard to the killing ? murder is the most serious category of unlawful homicide. Definition: ?Murder is the unlawful killing of a human being under Queen?s peace with malice aforethought?. Actus Reus of Murder (Pagett, Jordan, Smith and Blaue) The actus reus of murder simply consists of the unlawful killing of a human being under Queen?s peace. It can be broken down into three main elements: The unlawful killing ? the killing must be unlawful. ...read more.

Middle

The prosecution must prove that defendant?s act was both legal and factual cause of death. Factual ? use the ?But for? test. But for the defendants conduct, would the consequences have occurred? R v Pagett ? Pagett?s girlfriend was killed by police bullets while Pagett was using her as a shield. Legal ? the defendants act must be an operative and substantial cause of death. R v Smith ? two soldiers had a fight which resulted in the victim receiving a bayonet wound. Doctor failed to diagnose punctured lung and gave bad treatment. (The chain of causation wasn?t broken ? at the time of death, the original wound was still operating and substantial cause.) ...read more.

Conclusion

(Victims refusal to accept transfusion did not break the chain of causation) Mens Rea of Murder ( Vickers, Cunningham) Mens rea of murder is simply stated as intention to kill or cause grievous bodily harm (GBH) with malice aforethought, which is an element of planning. There are two definite cases for mens rea of murder ? stated below. In Vickers, the defendant broke into a sweet shop and beat the elderly owner down. He was convicted of murder as the element of planning was there. R v Cunningham - the defendant had repeatedly struck his victim with a chair leg and the victim died. The House of Lords stated that it amounts to murder because the intention to cause ?very serious injury (GBH) was there. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Criminal Law section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Criminal Law essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Murder - Notes and Evaluation.

    4 star(s)

    Cato (1976). The defendant must also take the victim as he finds him. This is known as the thin skull rule, and means that if the victim has something about him which makes an injury more serious, the defendant is liable for the more serious injury, e.g. Blaue (1975). 4.)

  2. Marked by a teacher

    Critical evaluation of murder for A2 law unit 4

    3 star(s)

    They should pay for all the pain they have caused to the family of the victim, and the fact that they denied someone the previalage to live the rest of their lives - they gave up the right to be a normal human being and be able to enjoy their

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Voluntary Manslaghter - Notes and Evaluation.

    3 star(s)

    immediate, but was successful on the grounds of Diminished Responsibility as "slow burn anger" is a recognized symptom of battered women's syndrome. The Court of Appeal has made it clear that a defence of provocation can succeed if there is a series of events over time which drove the woman to murder (Humphreys 1995).

  2. Non-Fatal Offences - Notes and Evaluation.

    Many words do not have the same meaning now as they did in 1861 and some words are no longer used or have a specialist legal meaning. An example of this is the word 'malicious', as a layman would define the word as meaning evil or wicked, whereas a lawyer

  1. Looking at the offences of Assault, Battery, Actual bodily harm and Grievous really serious ...

    I am now going to see if she would be guilty of a section 20 offence. I am now going to look at the defence of Grievous Bodily Harm (GBH). Ann should be convicted of GBH because; this case has quite similar circumstances to that of Eisenhower (1984).

  2. List and explain the six most important cases for the law on insanity, explaining ...

    However, the importance of Burgess is questionable, due to the decisions of other cases since 1991. In practice, any act done whilst sleepwalking should only be able to use the defence of insanity, not automatism. But in the case of Ecott 2007, the defendant raped a 15 year old girl whilst sleepwalking.

  1. Explain the meaning of Actus reus and mens rea

    an outcome but in trying to achieve this commits a different actus reus the malice cannot be transferred as illustrated in R v Pembliton where A intended to scare a crowd by throwing a stone but missed and broke a window thus having the actus reus of Criminal Damage and

  2. The History and Main Features of Criminal Law in the USA.

    These documents embodied the principles of limited government and the rule of law, which all were bound to obey. These ideas were developed in England and brought to the North American colonies in the 1600s. American colonists expanded their English legal heritage to provide new and higher levels of protection for the rights of the accused.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work