Crimes against the Person

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Chapter 3 : Crimes against the Person

Crimes against the Person    arrow_upward

  • Criminal Law can be defined as the body of rules that defines conduct that is not allowed because it is held to threaten, harm or endanger the safety and welfare of people, and that sets out the punishment to be imposed on people who do not obey these laws.
  • Crimes against Persons are crimes that are physical, violent, and often high profile.
  • Crimes against the person include an array of offenses of varying degrees of seriousness.
  • Crimes against the person involve violence or the threat of violence to a person, abduction, confinement or intimidation.
  • Crimes against the person include:
    • Homicide
    • Assault and Battery
    • Mayhem
    • Sex Crimes
    • Kidnapping
    • Stalking
    • Robbery
  • These violent crimes have the potential to incur the heaviest punishment dealt out by the criminal law, up to and including the death penalty for the most hateful offenses.
  • For the purposes of criminal law, "person" refers to the health and integrity of the body, as well as the freedom to move about willfully.
    • Any attempt to wrongfully harm or wrongfully imprison another person is considered to be a crime of this type.

    Homicide arrow_upward

  • Homicide is the killing of one person by the act or negligence of another person.
  • Criminal homicide may be classified as:
    • Murder
    • Manslaughter

    Murder arrow_upward

  • Murder is the intentional causing of death to another person.
  • Murder is further classified as:
    • First degree Murder: An unlawful killing that is both willful and premeditated.
    • Second Degree Murder: The crime of murdering in "the heat of passion" which can involve situations where a person acts during a period of intense fear, rage, or anger.

    Penalties and Sentencing for Murder

  • Whoever is guilty of murder in the first degree shall be punished by death or by imprisonment for life.
  • Whoever is guilty of murder in the second degree shall be imprisoned for any term of years or for life.

  • Manslaughter arrow_upward

  • Manslaughter is separate from murder, recognizing that people can occasionally kill each other without meaning to, and it tends to carry a reduced sentence, depending on the circumstances in which the killing occurred.
  • Following types of manslaughter are as follows:
    • Voluntary Manslaughter: results from an intentional act done without malice or premeditation and on sudden provocation.
    • Involuntary Manslaughter: results from recklessness or criminal negligence, or from an unlawful act that is misdemeanor or low-level felony.

    Penalties and Sentencing for Manslaughter

  • Whoever is guilty of Voluntary Manslaughter shall be fined or imprisoned not more than 15 years, or both.
  • Whoever is guilty of Involuntary Manslaughter, shall be fined, or imprisoned not more than 8 years, or both.

  • Assault and Battery arrow_upward

  • Assault involves the act of threatening to injure someone; whereas Battery is the actual physical act of violence.
  • Assault involves:
    • An intentional, unlawful threat to cause harm to someone else by force.
    • Creating circumstances that cause fear for another individual.
    • Ability to carry out the act if it is not prevented.
  • Battery is the intentional touching with their own body, or with an object, of another individual against their will
  • An actor commits a battery if he acts intentionally:
    • To cause a harmful or offensive contact or
    • To cause imminent apprehension of such a contact
    • A harmful or offensive contact actually occurs

    Penalty and Sentencing for Assault and Battery

  • Whoever, in the commission of any acts, uses a deadly or dangerous weapon or inflicts bodily injury shall be fined or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both.

  • Mayhem arrow_upward

  • Mayhem is the crime of maliciously injuring a person's body, especially to impair or destroy the victim's capacity for self-defense.
  • Penalty and Sentencing for Mayhem

  • Whoever is found guilty of mayhem shall be fined, or imprisoned for not more than 20 years, or both.

  • Sex Crimes arrow_upward

  • Sex crimes include a number of accusations:
    • Rape
    • Sexual assault
    • Indecent Exposure
    • Child Molestation


  • Rape is defined as unlawful intercourse without a person’s consent, usually by an act of force or threats
  • Sexual Assault

  • Sexual Assault can be any sexual contact that is unwelcome such as touching, fondling, or groping of sexual areas of the body.
  • Child Molestation

  • Child Molestation is used to describe any unlawful sexual activity involving a child and an adult.
  • Penalty and Sentencing for Sex Crimes

    By force or threat

    Shall be fined, imprisoned for any term of years or life, or both

    By other means

    Shall be fined, imprisoned for any term of years or life, or both

    With children

    Shall be fined and imprisoned for not less than 30 years or for life

    Kidnapping arrow_upward

  • Kidnapping is the taking away of a person against the person’s will, usually to hold the person in false imprisonment for ransom or in furtherance of another crime.
  • False imprisonment is to confine a person without the legal authority to do so.
  • Penalty and Sentencing for Kidnapping

  • Whoever unlawfully seizes, confines, inveigles, decoys, kidnaps, abducts, or carries away and holds for ransom or reward, shall be
    • Punished by imprisonment for any term of years or for life and, if
    • The death of any person results, shall be punished by death or life imprisonment

    Stalking arrow_upward

  • Stalking is defined as the crime of intentionally and repeatedly following or harassing another person, attempting to contact a person or watching a person.
  • Stalking is a pattern of behavior that makes another person worry for his or her safety.
  • Penalty and Sentencing for Stalking

  • If found guilty of felony stalking, he shall be fined, or punished for not more than a year, or both.
  • A subsequent violation of stalking is punishable by 3-5 years in state prison.

  • Robbery arrow_upward

  • Robbery is defined as taking away of goods or property by force or intimidation, with the intention of permanently depriving the owner of those items.
  • Penalty and Sentencing for Robbery

  • A person who commits robbery shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for a minimum term of not less than 2 years and a maximum term of not more than 15 years.

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