This is purely hypothetical:

A person announces their intent to attack another with "magic", telegraphing what witnesses consider a "spell". It's broad daylight with numerous witnesses and surveillance footage. The victim then immediately suffers a miraculous death that can't be explained by science (all their blood turns to tar, they spontaneously dissolve to viscera, or they simply drop dead for no discernible medical reason)

Could the "magician" be found guilty of any crime greater than verbal assault if no causation link between the attacker's incomprehensible action and the victim's death is found?

  • "Magician" may not be the best of words here, considering in the US it's almost always used to refer to illusionists who are known to have no actual powers. Maybe "wizard" would be a better choice. – cHao Dec 29 '17 at 23:41

In the USA, you must be found guilty "beyond reasonable doubt". As you describe it, I'd say there is an unreasonable suspicion of guilt, not guilt beyond reasonable doubt.

If the magician killed three people that way, then three unexplainable deaths following three spells might get him convicted. A jury might say that even though there is no way to explain how the killing worked, the correlation might be enough to prove guilt beyond reasonable doubt.

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