Blog | Post

Common Law Murder
posted on in Criminal Law by BarProse

Common Law Murder

Issue

State the general rule and apply the facts under a sub-heading for each element.

Rule
February 2008 #3 Model B Murder is the unlawful killing of another human being with malice aforethought. Malice aforethought exists if there is no excuse justifying the killing and no adequate provocation can be found, and if the killing is committed with one of the following states of mind: intent to kill, intent to inflict great bodily injury, reckless indifference to an unjustifiably high risk to human life, or intent to commit a felony.
February 2008 #3 Model A Murder is the unlawful killing of another human being with malice aforethought.

[...]

Malice is satisfied under one of four theories:

1 Intent to kill;

2 Intent to commit great bodily injury;

3 Wanton and Willful disregard of human life (“Depraved Heart Killing”); or

4 Felony Murder Rule.

July 2007 #4 Model A At common law, murder is the unlawful killing of a human being with malice aforethought, which is established by any one of the following states of mind: (i) intent to kill, (ii) intent to do serious bodily harm, (iii) reckless indifference to an unjustifiably high risk to human life (i.e., depraved heart murder), and (iv) intent to commit a felony underlying the felony-murder rule.

Next: Intent to Kill

Homicide Approach

Second Degree Murder
Intent to Kill
Intent to Commit Great Bodily Injury
Reckless Disregard
Common Law Murder
Intent to Kill
Intent to Commit Great Bodily Injury
Reckless Disregard
Felony Murder
Voluntary Manslaughter
Provocation – Objective and Subjective
Time to Cool – Objective and Subjective
Involuntary Manslaughter
Misdemeanor Manslaughter

Please note: The model answers often contain errors of law, spelling and grammar. We provide them as starting points to craft your own responses.

Model answer materials The State Bar of California, used with permission. All other materials BarProse LLC