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First Degree Murder
posted on in Criminal Law by BarProse

First Degree Murder


First Degree Murder is a statutory crime that requires either Premeditation and Deliberation or Felony Murder. Premeditation and Deliberation may be addressed under one heading or separately depending on the extent of analysis indicated by the facts. State the general rule for First Degree Murder then proceed to the Premeditation and Deliberation/Felony Murder without further analysis.

February 2008 #3 Model A Murder in the first degree at common law was the intentional and deliberate killing of another human being. It required deliberation, but deliberation can happen in a very short period of time.
February 2007 #3 Model A First degree murder is a specific intent crime typically statutorily provided for. Typically, first degree murder consists of: (1) intentional killing of a human, (2) with time to reflect upon that killing, and (3) doing so in a cool and dispassionate manner.
February 2007 #3 Model B Murder is the killing of another human being with malice afterthought. The crime of murder is subdivided into degrees based on the intent of the accused. First degree murder is the most serious of the degrees of murder. A person is guilty of first degree murder if the prosecution can show beyond a reasonable doubt that he killed someone with deliberation and premeditation; or, in jurisdictions that recognize the felony murder rule, if someone was killed as the foreseeable result of his act, or of the act of a coconspirator, during the course of an enumerated felony. This is the felony murder rule.

Next: Premeditated & Deliberate

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