Brian has had a bad day. He woke up to find a note on the kitchen table that his wife had found incriminating emails on his computer proving he was having an affair with his secretary and that she was leaving him and taking him for everything that he had.
Brian has had a bad day. He woke up to find a note on the kitchen table that his wife had found incriminating emails on his computer proving he was having an affair with his secretary and that she was leaving him and taking him for everything that he had. When he got to work, he found that his wife had forwarded the emails to his boss, who fired him for fraternizing with a subordinate. As he was cleaning out his desk, he was served with a law suit claiming sexual harassment against his secretary in that he was using his position as her supervisor to gain “amorous benefits”
Not being able to take anymore, Brian went to the local pub and began hitting pints of Guinness and shots of Jamesons. This continued for 7 hours, until he was thrown out of the bar for being too intoxicated. On the way home, Brian lost control of his car doing 95 mph in a residential neighborhood. He ran off the road, and drove through house killing Betsy Moran, a 30 year old mother of two who was in bed asleep. He was arrested that night for DUI and vehicular homicide. His blood alcohol content was .32 which is four times the legal limit.
That night, Ms. Moran’s husband called Abigail Smith, Betsy’s mother, to tell her what happened. Upon hearing the news, Mrs. Smith was so grief stricken that she had a massive heart attack and died. The next day, the prosecutor charged Brian with Abigail Smith’s death.
At trial, Brian’s attorney argues that the charge pertaining to the death of Mrs. Smith must be dismissed due to lack of the requisite causation. The prosecution points out that factually, Brian is responsible for Abigail Smith’s death. But for him driving drunk through Betsy Moran’s house, Abigail Smith would have never received the telephone call that ended her life.
You are the judge. How do you rule? Explain your decision fully addressing all arguments and give the legal analysis that brought you to your conclusion.
Consider causation, “actus rea” and “mens rea,” etc.
Provide concrete examples to support
• Integrate prior readings
• Integrate personal observations and knowledge in an accurate and highly insightful way
• Present new observations
• Organize and ensure information is presented in a logical sequence
• Ensure word choice and sentence structure are suitable
Please use Samaha, J. (2011). Criminal Law. (Tenth Edition). Belmont, CA. : Wadsworth if possible.
Substantive Criminal Justice
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