Questions tagged [criminal-law]

For questions about laws related to crime. Please add a location tag if the question is specific to a particular jurisdiction.

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179
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5answers
49k views

A student slipped a drug into my coffee — what are the legal ramifications of this situation?

I am a high school Chemistry teacher. This morning, while my back was turned to write on the board, one of my students (age 17) slipped a pill into my coffee mug. This is a thermos-style mug that has ...
90
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5answers
28k views

Stealing my own property back?

I have a guitar that I let my friend Joe borrow on the consensus that he would return it in a couple of days. Joe is a mutual friend of my ex Bob. Bob stole the guitar from Joe once he found out it ...
81
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8answers
35k views

Why shouldn't a bank robbery without threats be legal?

So say a bank robber walks into a bank and hands the teller a note saying simply "please give me $1,000" (or maybe even just verbally saying "I need $1,000 please") and if the teller accepts, which ...
71
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6answers
9k views

How would the actions of Hänsel and Gretel in the Grimm tale be interpreted in modern law?

This came up as a layman’s law question. I thought of this when reading the classic Grimm tale Hänsel and Gretel to my children. The situation is as follows: The witch imprisons Hänsel with the ...
71
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2answers
29k views

Daughter dies at party

My 19 year old step daughter attended a party in Illinois. One kid slipped a pill in her drink which caused her to have a heart attack and die. After watching this play out, this boy didn't even ...
68
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5answers
13k views

Why is stealing from an employer a criminal act when stealing from an employee is a civil act?

Here is the full question with all the context and details: In the majority of cases in the U.S. about theft at a workplace, why is the matter usually tried in a criminal court when the employer is ...
58
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10answers
14k views

Why is murder considered a more serious crime than attempted murder?

By its sentencing guidelines (the world over?), murder is considered a more serious crime than attempted murder. If intent to kill has indeed been proven, does the latter crime reward incompetence ...
53
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4answers
26k views

How do people publicly admit to criminal activity and not typically get arrested?

I've noticed that people on YouTube and even on TV would sometimes say things like "I used to take lots of coke a few years ago" or "I used to smoke weed daily until this and that" or "Yea, I smoke ...
50
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4answers
18k views

A man killed my son and married one of the witnesses. Can the witness's statements still be used in court against him?

In Florida a career felon, who is a complete stranger to my son, killed my son. He is being prosecuted for this crime in a state court in Florida. There are two witnesses. One of them is the the ...
45
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4answers
12k views

Course of action in a criminal case when there is no conceivable defense

I am not a lawyer or a law student; my work is in mathematics, but I like to learn about criminal law as a hobby. I have spent some time googling and searching to find an answer to my question but ...
45
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5answers
25k views

Why are people sentenced to prison for terms longer than life?

Albert Morake was sentenced to 1,535 years in prison. How can a person be sentenced to more than 1 life imprisonment?
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2answers
9k views

Would Trump's defence work in other courts?

Donald Trump's defence against incitement is essentially the ambiguity of his language: he never explicitly told the crowd to violently attack Congress, but he did use ambiguous words such as "...
39
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6answers
13k views

Suppose someone kills more people than they intended. Did they murder the extra people?

If a person sets a bomb in a music festival. Based on previous attendance numbers, they expected 60,000 people to show up. 120,000 people showed up and were killed by their bomb. Legally, did they ...
38
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5answers
15k views

Is ban evasion illegal?

What is the legality of "Ban Evasions"? This sounds like a dumb question but perhaps enlighten the ignorant. Ban Evasion, "The creation of a new account on a platform or website after being ...
35
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4answers
8k views

Can you legally move a dead body to preserve it as evidence?

A fisherman is heading upstream in his boat, and sees a human corpse float past. Obviously even if it wasn't murder, it still warrants a 911 call because it was a death. The river however, is steadily ...
33
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6answers
6k views

“attempted murder” of a dead man?

This question inspired by an episode of a certain popular TV detective show. Mr Smith hates Mr Jones, and plots to kill him. Smith enters Jones' house, and shoots him in bed, while also setting up an ...
33
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7answers
16k views

Pregnant spouse slipped abortion pills unknowingly. What would the legal ramifications be?

Suppose a partner to a pregnant woman gave her an abortion pill which successfully aborted the pregnancy. Suppose that this was done in a non-violent way, unbeknownst to the woman. One could argue ...
33
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6answers
26k views

Do I have the right to enter into someone house without permission if my child is in there?

Here's the situation Main persons: my daughter Maria, 16 years old my daughter's friend Mario, over 18 years old My daughter was asked by her friend Mario to hang out at someone's ...
31
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3answers
11k views

Why does the victim have to press charges?

Case in point that was in the news: "BART identifies man in viral video of racist attack on train", East Bay Times A California man attacked a stranger while expressing his hatred of the victim's ...
31
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3answers
14k views

In the US, is it legal to lie to a business such as a hotel to obtain a discount?

Let's say a hotel chain or a restaurant provides a 50% discount to anyone aged over 70. Would it be legal (as in, no criminal charges could arise from that action) for a patron to lie to the hotel/...
28
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4answers
18k views

If someone orders a pizza in the US and doesn't pay for it, could they be arrested?

If you were to order a pizza in the US and didn't pay for it afterwards, could you be arrested?
26
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5answers
11k views

Is harmlessly appearing to be a school bus driver a crime?

Hypothetically, if someone who owned a school bus legally drove said school bus to a bus stop 3 minutes before the stop would ordinarily be made, allowed schoolchildren to board without speaking, then ...
26
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4answers
12k views

Where can I report criminal intent found on the dark web?

I wasn't sure if I should ask this here or on the Tor site. I think it fits more here. I came across a Stack Exchange clone on the dark web. I won't go into too much detail or provide a link, but ...
25
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3answers
17k views

What is the legal take on the trolley problem?

From the Wikipedia page on the trolley problem: There is a runaway trolley barreling down the railway tracks. Ahead, on the tracks, there are five people tied up and unable to move. The trolley ...
25
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2answers
9k views

Is murder in Washington, DC pardonable by the President?

In most cases murder is a state crime. However, Washington, DC is not covered within any state's jurisdiction. My question is whether the President can pardon someone for committing murder if the ...
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3answers
9k views

Is it illegal to carry someone else's ID or credit card?

I was watching a video by RealWorldPolice about a high school student who was arrested for carrying a loaded gun into his school in Seattle, WA. Footage of the entire search, detainment, and arrest of ...
24
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6answers
13k views

Can I be charged for murder if I throw peanuts at someone who has a severe peanut allergy and they die as a result of that?

Assuming I already knew that they had a peanut allergy, and my intention was to hurt them, but not necessarily to kill them.
24
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2answers
9k views

Self incrimination during medical examination

If, during a medical examination, an alleged accused says anything that might incriminate himself, it should be neither recorded nor reported.[emphasis mine] source: Synopsis of forensic medicine and ...
24
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3answers
7k views

Pretending to be from the “Freedom to Breathe Agency”: impersonating an officer?

There's a woman going around claiming to be from the federal "Freedom to Breathe Agency", telling store workers that they can personally be sued for telling customers that they need to wear ...
23
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1answer
2k views

Is presenting a play showing Military characters in a bad light a crime in the US? Or does the First Admendment prevent this?

This is a followup to Is it illegal to wear military surplus clothing? US Law 10 USC 771 provides that only members of the US military may wear: ...the uniform, or a distinctive part of the ...
23
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1answer
2k views

Bright-line or Litmus Test for Sedition?

The media is crediting Donald Trump, Giuliani and Trump's son with inciting the protesters to march from the Ellipse to and breach the Capitol building on 6 January 2021, interrupting the electoral ...
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4answers
10k views

Can a person purposely provoke someone to hit him and then report a crime?

Say someone purposely provokes another person by insulting him, knowing that this person is easily provoked. The provoked person then hits him. Can the person then report a crime or even file a civil ...
21
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5answers
13k views

Is it legal to ask to be shot?

Say I ask someone to shoot me non lethally. Not assisted suicide, Just shot. Is this legal? Isn't it like asking to be assaulted with a deadly weapon?
21
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3answers
6k views

Is attempted murder the same charge regardless of damage done?

Scenario 1: Bob points a gun at Joe's head, says "I'll kill you", pulls the trigger, and misses Joe by 1 inch. Joe is fine physically. Scenario 2: Bob points a gun at Joe's head, says "...
21
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2answers
17k views

Someone has a video of me doing drugs. Is there legal protection against its release?

It's a bit like slander, except there is no false information. I wanted to Google whatever this may be called to see what my options are if this video is ever released. I'm stumped as to what to ...
21
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3answers
6k views

If you escaped from prison for a crime you did not commit, would you still serve the increased sentence once exonerated?

For example: you were convicted of murder and escaped and were then sentenced to years on top of your original sentence, but you were later exonerated of the crime of murder; would you still have to ...
21
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2answers
4k views

Is there a law in the UK that makes possession of specific publications illegal?

I just read the following in an article in The Guardian (emphasis mine): In prison they met their co-defendant Rahman, 32, one of nine men prosecuted in connection with a plan to attack the London ...
21
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1answer
5k views

Is it legal to forge a Permission to Attack during a physical penetration test engagement?

When doing penetration testing (hired as a security consultant to examine and test a company's security by simulating an attacker), it's necessary to have a document called "Permission to Attack&...
21
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5answers
24k views

Why aren't athletes charged with assault?

Athletes get into brawls and whatnot all the time. Mike Tyson even bit a guy's ear off. Why aren't they charged for assault and sentenced to jail time? I understand that athletes might get hurt ...
21
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3answers
2k views

When a criminal statute is struck down as unconstitutional, what happens to people who were convicted under it?

We just had a question about what happens to convicts if a law is repealed. However, that question's example of homosexual behavior wasn't decriminalized in the US by legislative action, but rather by ...
20
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9answers
4k views

What happens if a prosecutor refuses to file charges?

Inspired by the answer to a previous question I asked. Let's say Alice assaults Bob, and Bob goes to the police. I gather from the answer to the linked question that what happens in principle is that ...
20
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2answers
6k views

Can a vaccine be required by law?

This question came up because I read that Bolsonaro, Brazil's president, was criticized by the opposition for saying that COVID-19 vaccinations won't be mandatory. The opposition said that the vaccine ...
20
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1answer
3k views

Arizona laws regarding ownership of ground glassware for chemistry usage

I was watching a YouTube video that included an interview with a Clandestine Chemist, and at the 8:50 mark, he states: In Arizona, mere possession of ground glassware is a felony, if you're not a ...
19
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4answers
6k views

What would be Julian Assange's expected punishment, on the current English criminal law?

Currently, the only charges form the British side against him are, that he avoided the criminal procedure (he was, on the British law, a fugitive) by his "visit" on the Ecuadorian Embassy. Meanwhile, ...
18
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4answers
8k views

Is it illegal to ask someone to commit a misdemeanor? What is this called?

In my Googling, I learned that in most states a defendant cannot be an accessory to a misdemeanor. What about someone just nagging and insisting on it?
18
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2answers
5k views

Can someone be charged with the murder of unidentified victims?

I've been watching "Des", ITV's dramatisation of the arrest and trial of serial killer Dennis Nielsen. The police seem desperate to identify the names of the victims, despite having the ...
18
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3answers
40k views

If an adult is raped by a minor, is it statutory rape?

Say an adult is raped by a minor, and does not give legally applicable consent regardless of knowledge of age of the minor. Do statutory rape charges against the adult still apply?
17
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2answers
9k views

No evidence is required for an indictment by a grand jury?

I just read the indictment of Christopher Collins, a congressman, for relaying insider information on a company with publicly traded stock, and for "lying" to a federal agent, ie for denying he ...
17
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2answers
5k views

How is a person residing abroad subject to US law?

I am reading this press release of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California. The attorney states that: Mason Sheppard, aka “Chaewon,” 19, of Bognor Regis, in the United ...
17
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4answers
9k views

At what point does refusal to report a crime make one an accomplice to a crime?

This is a question out of curiosity only, indirectly inspired by my last question post. I'm wondering at what point not reporting a crime is itself a crime. I know that if someone happens to witness ...

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