Case Studies: Insanity 2

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  • Case Studies: Insanity 2
    • Intoxication
      • DPP v Beard (1920)
        • Appellant ***** 13 year old girl while intoxicated, put his hand over her mouth to stop her screaming
          • She died from suffication
        • Lord Birkenhead: "voluntary drunkenness was never an excuse for criminal misconduct
      • DPP v Majewski (1977)
        • Appellant had taken lots of drugs over 48hr period
        • Went to pub, had drink. Got into fight with 2 others. Landlord broke up fight and appellant punched him
        • When police arrived, he assaulted the arresting officer. Another officer was struck by him while driving to the station
        • Next morning: attacked police inspector in his cell. Charged with 4 accounts of occasioning ABH and 3 accounts of assaulting police officers
        • Appellant claimed he had no recollection due to intoxication. Found guilty on all accounts and appealed contending he could not be convicted when he lacked mens rea of the offences due to intoxicated state
        • Held: appeal dismissed, conviction upheld. The crime was one of basic intent and therefore his conviction could not be relied on as defence
    • Involuntary Intoxication
      • Will provide defence to both specific and basic intent offences if D unable to form mens rea
        • Allen (1988)
          • Appellant consumed home made wine- much stronger than anticipated
          • He committed sexual assaults and claimed he was so drunk he didn't know what he was doing
          • Argued- not voluntarily placed himself int hat state as wine was much stronger than realised
          • Held: intoxication was still voluntary even though he had not realised strength. Crime of sexual assault is one of basic intent and therefore appellant was unable to rely on intoxicated state to negative mens rea
        • Hardie (1984)
          • D, whose relationship was about to end, took several of partner's valium. Became intoxicated and set fire to wardrobe in partner's flat
          • Decision: valium not usually likely to cause unpredictability or aggressiveness. Appeal allowed
      • even where intoxication is involuntary, if D can form mens rea he can be convicted
        • Kingston (1995)
          • Had business dispute with couple. They hired Penn to gain damaging info on Kingston to blackmail him
          • Penn invited 15 year old boy to room and drugged him. The boy remembers nothing until waking up next morning
          • Penn invited Kingston and drugged him. Penn and Kingston both engaged in sexual acts with the unconscious boy. Penn recorded it and took photos
          • Kingston charged with indecent assault of a youth
          • Jury convicted him, he appealed where conviction was quashed


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