This Week, Matt Bromund, Principal Attorney of The Bromund Law Group, analyzes mens rea – criminal intent, and helps us understand this complicated and important subject.

Criminal Intent is much more the subject of controversy than the criminal act (actus reus) that Matt analyzed last week.

The law has a difficult time figuring out which intentions should be criminal and the Courts have a very difficult time figuring out how to know what a person intended when they committed an act.

There are three standards of criminal intent that are prohibited:

  1.  Malice
  2.  Specific Intent
  3. General Intent

Malice only exists for two categories of crime:  Murder and Arson.  This has to have a very high standard of criminal intent because the act can be motivated by a wide array of intentions.

Murder has been prohibited by society.  Homicide, on the other hand, can be justified in a number of situations.  The first situation that comes to mind is one of self-defense.  Other examples can be in the case of a soldier killing in war, and/or consensual sporting encounters.

Malice requires having an evil intent.  This standard recognizes that there can be evil intent.  The person’s intent anticipates some sort of pleasure in the resulting death.

A few great take-aways from the show – Rules of Successful Criminal Defense:

  1.  Don’t put yourself in a position where violating the criminal law seems like the reasonable thing to do.
  2. If you find yourself in a situation where violating a law might be a possibility, make sure you make your intent clear to family, neighbors, friends.
  3. If you are being questioned by the police, accept that you are in a situation where you will never convince them of your innocent intent.  DON’T SAY ANYTHING!

Listen to Matt’s show for more details on criminal intent.  He uses real-life situations to help us understand how this concept relates to our every-day lives.

If you find yourself, or know a friend or family member in a situation where violating the law might be a possibility, call The Bromund Law Group – They are there to help.

The Bromund Law Group is Ventura County’s premier immigration, family law, and criminal defense firm. They are solutions-focused and dedicated to fighting for your family.

They are the  premier law firm for immigration, family law, and criminal defense in Ventura, California.

The Bromund Law Group is a bilingual firm (Spanish/English) with experience working with military families and devoted to seeing their client’s lives improved as a result of their work.

Never a consultation fee, always the truth.

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Ventura, California

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