Principle of Causation case facts



Causation in fact:

D wished to kill his mother, placed cyanide in drink but she died of a heart attack before she drank. Held that D was acquitted of murder as 'but for' his actions, she would have died regardless. D was not the factual cause of death.

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Causation in Law: D used his pregnant girlfriend as a human shield while shooting at police, police shot and killed the girl. Held that the D was convicted as he was morally responsible, more than a minimal cause and accelerated the death.

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Contributory negligence of the victim: V was a deaf man walking in the road, D was speeding and sounded horn, V didn't hear and was killed. Held that the D was still liable, the deaf man's negligence didn't remove causation as it wasn't grossly negligent

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Escape of the Victim: D have a lift to a girl in his car, told her to undress ans she refused. Tried to remove her clothing and she jumped from the car. Held that causation was not removed as the V's actions were not considered grossly negligent 

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Escape of the Victim: A group of people shouted abuse and kicked the door of V's room, V jumped from the window sufering serious injuries. Held that the conviction would be upheld as it was reasonably foreseeable that the V would fear violence and would jump

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The V's treatment of himself: D slashed V with a knife due to V indecently assaulting his 12yo, evidence that V reopened the scars in order to commit suicide. Held that the D would be convicted as he had significantly contributed to the death.

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Intervention of a third party: (Malcherek and Steel can be used here too) . V was stabbed and taken to the hospital and given antibiotics he was allergic to. Large amounts of fluid was injected into the V, waterlogging his lungs and leading to pneumonia. V died. Held that the treatment was 'palpably wrong' and causation was broken.

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Eggshell Conditions: D stabbed the V through the heart and liver, V required life-saving treatment through a blood transfusion. However, the V was a Jehova's Witness and could not take blood due to religion. Held that causation would not be removed as the V's religious beliefs were considered eggshell, the D must take the V as he finds them. Refusal of medical treatment will never remove causation.

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