Criminal Law: Actus Reus Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Criminal Law: Actus Reus Deck (18):

Hill v Baxter

(voluntary act)

hypothetical example of a swarm of bees entering the car and causing the driver to lose control

D would not be guilty of dangerous driving as their conduct was not voluntary, the act must be voluntary for it to from the AR



(state of affairs + involuntary acts)

D was deported from Ireland to England, on arrival she was charged with being an illegal alien

her conviction was upheld even though she had not voluntarily come to England



(omissions, contractual duty)

D was a railway crossing keeper who failed to shut the gate and a train collided with a cart, killing the train driver

D had a duty to shut the gate as part of his contractual obligation and so was liable for V’s death



(omissions, official position)

D was a police officer who stood by while V was beaten up

D was guilty for failing to perform his duty whilst in a public position and was charged with misconduct


Gibbins and Proctor

(omissions, relationship)

father starved his 7 year old daughter to death deliberately

he was guilty of murder because he had a duty to feed her based on the relationship between parent and child


Stone and Dobinson

(omissions, voluntary)

D had voluntarily assumed a responsibility to a relative by taking her in, V died as D failed to get her the medical help she needed

D was found liable for her death as they had a duty to care for her and failed to do so



(omissions, dangerous situation)

D accidentally set fire to a mattress and failed to put it out or call the fire brigade

D was liable as he had created a dangerous situation and owed a duty to act reasonably by calling the fire brigade



(omissions, end of duty)

doctors and family wanted to withdraw life saving treatment

duty ended as the treatment was no longer in the patents best interests, thus not being an omission or forming AR



(factual causation)

D poisoned his mother’s drink but reports showed she died of a heart attack and from the poison

D was therefore not liable for his mother’s death as he was not the factual cause of it, but for his actions she would’ve died anyway



(factual causation)

D used V as a human shield and shot at the police who shot back and killed V

D was the factual cause of her death because but for his actions she would not have died



(legal causation, more than a minimal cause)

D and V engaged in a high speed car chase, V lost control of the car and died

ruled that D’s actions must be more than a minimal cause of the consequence, “more than a slight or trifling link”



(legal causation — not the only cause)

D was working on a train track and failed to give proper warning to the approaching train drivers

D was guilty, it was irrelevant that the accident may have been avoided if others had not also been negligent



(thin skill rule)

D stabbed V and V refused a blood transfusion because she was a Jehovah’s Witness

D was still liable for her death even though a blood transfusion would’ve saved her life, D must take V as they find them including religious beliefs



(intervening acts, victims own act)

D made sexual advances towards V so V jumped out of a moving car to escape unwanted advances

V’s actions were foreseeable so the chain of causation was not broken and D was still liable



(intervening acts, medical treatment)

D stabbed V and V was dripped twice from a stretcher, receiving negligent medical treatment

however, chain of causation was not broken as the original wounds were still the substantial cause of death



(intervening acts, medical treatment)

D shot V but complications during the tracheotomy led to V’s death

chain was not broken as D’s actions were still a significant contribution to V’s death, if D hasn’t have shot V then V would not have needed the tracheotomy



(poor medical treatment)

V died after being given a large amount of antibiotics even though they were allergic to them

the mistake by the doctor caused the chain of causation to be broken as it was the overwhelming cause of death, the original wounds had virtually healed



(third party)

D supplied a class A drug to V who then died taking it

V’s act was voluntary and so broke the chain of causation, V had the choice whether to inject themselves or not