Affirmative Defense Essay

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#1 –– What are five defenses to criminal conduct? Explain in each case how each might be used. There are many kinds of defenses to criminal conduct that are known as affirmative defenses. The textbook mentions a few including: automatism, intoxication, coercion, alibi, and defense of property. The defense of automatism insists that the defendants was “incapable of formulating criminal intent because he/she blacked out or was acting unconsciously”, and therefore, had no intent to commit the crime. (p. 79). For instance, there have been many cases where individuals commit criminal acts while in an unconscious state of mind. Specifically, there have been instances where defendants acted outside of the law while sleep-walking. As a result, the …show more content…
This is one of the oldest forms of defense where the defendant claims that they could not have possibly committed a criminal act simply because they were somewhere else when the act took place. For example, if a murder occurs at 12 pm in the state of St. Louis, but the suspect is able to prove that they were in New York City at the exact same time using a credible witness or other sources of evidence, then the suspect has a strong argument for his/her innocence. The strength of an alibi depends on the “veracity or truthfulness” of other witnesses as well as the combination of credible …show more content…
Additionally, it guaranteed them the right to be informed of the nature of the charges against them, the right to confront their accusers in court, and finally, the right to have assistance of counsel for their defense. However, the right to assistance was originally interpreted to mean that if the defendant had an attorney, they could bring them to court. Nonetheless, through a series of rulings on cases, the courts finally made it a mandatory component for the state or federal government to provide counsel to defendants who were unable to afford an

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