Criminal Damage Act 1971

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  • Created by: Tom Ower
  • Created on: 05-05-13 15:31
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  • Criminal Damage Act 1971
    • Section 1 (1) - Basic Offence of Criminal Damage
      • Mens rea
        • Intent or recklessness
          • R v Pembliton 1874 (stone + window)
          • R v Cunningham 1957
        • Without lawful excuse
          • S5 (2)(a)
            • R v Denton
            • If D believes owner would consent to the damage.
            • Jaggard v Dickinson 1980
          • S5(2)(b)
            • D must believe that the property needing protection is in immediate danger.
            • Blake v DPP 1993
              • God cannot consent to damage.
      • Actus reus
        • Destroy or damage
          • Not defined in act, but property deemed destroyed if it is no longer fit for its purpose.
          • Damage can either be permanent or temporary and it will have occurred if time, money and efforts are required to return property to its original state.
            • Roe v Kingerlee 1986 (mud + wall)
            • A v R 1978 (spat on Po Po's coat)
            • Hardman v Chief Constable of Avon and Somerset Constabulary 1986
            • Blake v DPP 1993 (graffiti)
            • Morphitis v Salmon 1990 (scratch on scaffolding pole)
        • Property
          • Defined under S.10 (1) of Criminal Damage Act 1971
          • Property of a tangible nature, whether real or personal, including money and including wild creatures  but not including mushrooms growing wild
        • Belonging to another
          • No one can be guilty of criminal damage if he or she has damaged their own property.
          • S10 (2) states property will be treated as belonging to any person:
            • Having the custody or control of it
            • Having in it any proprietary right or interest
            • Having a charge on it
    • Section 1 (2) - Aggravated offence, endangering life
      • Actus Reus
        • Destroy or damage any property
          • Under S1 (2) D can still be guilty if the damage or destruction is to his/her own property
        • Endanger the life of another
          • Must be his/ her actual destruction of or damage to the property that endangers the life of another
          • R v Sangha 1988
            • Damage to furniture endangered life
          • R v Steer 1987
            • Damage to door did not endanger life
      • Mens rea
        • Intent or recklesness
          • Same as the basic offence, but must also intend the destruction or damage to endanger life or must be reckless.
    • Section 1 (3) - Criminal damage using fire (arson)
      • Actus reus + Mens rea same as the basic offence or aggravated offence, the only difference is the damage was caused by fire
      • Miller 1983


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