other elements of mens rea

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  • other elements of mens rea
    • negligence
      • defendant falls so far short of the standards of the reasonable man as to create criminal liability
      • objective test
        • a person is negligent if they fail to meet the standards of the reasonable man
      • use of negligence
        • driving offences e.g. s3 Road Traffic Act 1988
          • makes it an offence to drive without due car and attention
        • Gross Negligence Manslaughter
          • Adomako (1994)
    • knowledge
      • defendant can be liable when they do something 'knowingly'
      • Sweet v Parsley (1969) - D owned house which she let out to tenants smoking cannabis but D did not know of that
        • convicted of 'being concerned in the management of premises used for the smoking of cannabis resin'
        • HL overturned the conviction because she did not know cannabis was being smoked in the house
    • transferred malice
      • defendant intends something to happen to a person but it happens to someone else
      • Latimer (1886) -  L meant to hit a man who had attacked him but the belt he was using bounced off man and hit woman
        • found guilty of an assault on the woman
      • AG Ref (No 3 of 1994) (1997) - man attacked pregnant woman who baby died of injuries once born
        • HL said that transferred malice was transferred malice was a valid principle of law
      • Pembliton (1874) - D threw stone, intending it to hit people with whom he had been fighting. Stone hit and broke window
        • intention to hit people could not be transferred to a window
    • coincidence of actus reus and mens rea
      • point at which actus reus and mens rea of the crime come together
      • may only be momentary
      • whole sequence of events may be spread over a period of time
      • Thabo Meli v R (1954) - T + others attacked man and threw him over cliff, thinking he was dead, man died from exposure
        • guilty - actus reus and mens rea came together even though man died later from cause not considered by defendants
      • Church (1966) - threw woman into river believing her to be dead. woman died of drowning
        • guilty - actus reus and mens rea came together even though woman not dead when thrown into river
      • Fagan (1986) - F parked his car on policeman's foot
        • guilty - there was mens rea for actus reus of applying force to policeman's foot when F turned ignition off
      • Le Brun (1991) - woman died after being dropped by husband
        • guilty - actus reus and mens rea came together in course of man and woman having argument, woman falling down, and being dropped by husband trying to pick her up while drunk


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