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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Not very magical, still... » » A simple question (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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balducci
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Has anyone mentioned (possible) adultery on the part of the wife? I believe adultery is a crime in some common law states, though not in all.

Probably that is a standard wise guy answer. Smile
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mastermindreader
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There is no evidence of that in the facts presented, other than the husband's suspicion. But assume he was correct. Would the planning involved in the offense(s) indicate that the events took place in the heat of passion without premeditation? And recall that the husband's only original intent was to scare the victim.
TonyB2009
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Before I look at the other replies, arson by both father and son. Murder by the son. Murder by the father because the woman died during the commission of a felony, arson. Probably assault, assault with a deadly weapon, for the father, something like reckless endangerment by the son.
mastermindreader
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Now read my previous comments. No arson, no felony murder.
TonyB2009
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I have just read through the rest of the replies and see I am widely off-base. Great question, Bob. I am looking forward to the summing up.

Let's look at it again. The house burning may not be arson, but it could be fraud if the house is insured.

The father, assault and manslaughter, as well as concealing a crime and fraud against the insurers.

The son, murder, conspiracy to murder , concealing a crime, and fraud against the insurers.
Magnus Eisengrim
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Quote:
On May 26, 2015, mastermindreader wrote:
Highly unlikely.


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Dannydoyle
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I think Greenpeace will come after them for burning the house.

Now they are REALLY going to get it!

Is it possible to just sentence them to "untill my headache goes away"?
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mastermindreader
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Tony- There would only be insurance fraud if they burned the house down with the intent of making an insurance claim. If they made no claim after the burning, there would be no fraud.

Their purpose in burning the house down was to conceal evidence of a crime, not to defraud an insurance company.
arthur stead
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Bob, I still have a fatalist view of how facts can be twisted in a court of law. Plus I freely admit I don't have the brain power to think like an attorney. Nevertheless, here's my take on your scenario:

The father: charged with assault with a deadly weapon.
The son: charged with attempted murder.
Both: charged with tampering with evidence.
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balducci
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Quote:
On May 26, 2015, mastermindreader wrote:

Their purpose in burning the house down was to conceal evidence of a crime, not to defraud an insurance company.

Might the law of nuisances apply? Apparently common law is one of the sources of nuisance law. I wanted to post a link to what I am talking about but it doesn't work because of formatting, anyone interested can try googling "THE LAW OF NUISANCES Environmental Regulation through the Backdoor".
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TomBoleware
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How old was the son? That would indeed change things, wouldn't it?

Tom
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Dannydoyle
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Why is everyone approaching this as if it is a trick question?
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MobilityBundle
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Bob, before revealing the answer (if at all), it might be fun to give folks a "menu" of possible crimes. For example, you've already spilled the beans with respect to arson and house burning, but those would have been good to include. Even as a multiple choice question, the answers might be interesting.
mastermindreader
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On May 26, 2015, TomBoleware wrote:
How old was the son? That would indeed change things, wouldn't it?

Tom


I already sugggested that his age might be a factor. In an actual exam you would probably want to raise that issue and explain what the possible crimes would be if he was a minor.

But Danny's right. It's not a trick question. Just a scenario that is trickier than it seems.

mobiltybundle-

I don't know about providing a list of possibilities. That would pretty well end the discussion because that's all the answer really is- a list of possibilities based on the facts provided with rationales given for each one.
Bob1Dog
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Great test! Good brain candy Smile
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I recall reading that Common Law in the courtroom related to "factual deliberation" ( I think it was called) has gone though some changes in recent decades.

So, does the year in which these events occurred have any bearing on the charges to be made? On the strategy of a defense attorney?

It seems that much of the story is based on statements from the father and son about intent, but may not be born out by fact. Why should we believe what they say about what occurred.

Of course, I may have been watching too much Law and Order.

As a side-bar, what if the son was the other party in the affair, and he didn't hate her but only wanted not to be found out?

Then the fire could be crime of passion and even the murder reduced to second degree
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Theodore Lawton
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Sheesh. Some family! Smile

I can't even begin to try. I'm not that smart to begin with and I got overwhelmed before the "she was just grazed" part.

I'm looking forward to the reveal Bob.
mastermindreader
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Funsway- The reason you should believe what's set forth in the scenario is simply because it is a hypothetical question in which all of the facts are assumed to be true.


Common law (the law of precedent) comes from the ancient laws of England based upon societal customs and recognized and enforced by the judgments and decrees of the courts, as opposed to statutory laws which are enacted by legislative bodies, even though the latter are often based on the principles of common law.

Nearly all laws today are statutory. But an understanding of the principles from which they were derived is an essential component of legal reasoning.

So, no, it doesn't matter when the events about took place. Assume they took place in the present in a mythical jurisdiction that still follows common law.
TonyB2009
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One more crack at it.

The father: Attempting to conceal a crime. Manslaughter, because he killed the wife but didn't intend to. Assault, because of the initial gun attack. Conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.

The son: murder. Conspiracy to murder. Attempting to conceal a crime. Conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.
Dannydoyle
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I think it was Mrs. Scarlet in the kitchen with a melon baller.
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