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Pa Criminal Law Outline by justinkerner


This is a bar review outline that I created. It's direct and to the point. (You can rely on this. As a point of reference, I was about 3 points from the highest essay score in PA. These served me well.)

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									                         PENNSYLVANIA CRIMINAL LAW

I.     Resisting Arrest
       a. The underlying arrest must be lawful
       b. The arresting officer must have acted with both authority and probable cause
       c. Even if an arrest is unlawful, Δ cannot use force to resist an arrest made by
          someone that Δ knows to be a police officer.
       d. Δ may, however, use force to resist a police officer if the police officer unlawfully
          uses or threatens to use deadly force.

II.    Simple Assault
       NOTE: Under PA Law, simple assault encompasses both assault and battery.
       a. Intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly causing bodily injury to another;
       b. Negligently causing bodily injury to another with a deadly weapon; or
       c. Creating apprehension of imminent and serious bodily injury to another through
          physical menace

III.   Aggravated Assault
       a. Attempting to cause or actually causing bodily injury to another under
          circumstances that manifest extreme indifference to the value of human life.
       b. Intentionally or knowingly attempting to cause or actually causing bodily injury
          with a deadly weapon.

IV.    Recklessly Endangering Another Person
       a. Conduct that places or may place another person in danger of death or serious
          bodily injury.

V.     Terroristic Threats
       a. Threatening to:
               i. Commit any crime of violence with intent to terrorize another
              ii. Cause evacuation of a building, place of assembly, or facility of public
                   transportation; or
             iii. Otherwise cause serious public inconvenience or terror with reckless
                   disregard of the risk of causing such terror or inconvenience.
VI.     Harassment
        a. With intent to harass or annoy, Δ:
                i. Subjects another to physical contact;
               ii. Follow another in a public place;
              iii. Engages in a course of conduct or repeatedly commits acts which serve no
                   legitimate purpose;
              iv. Communicates to or about another in any threatening or obscene manner;
               v. Communicates repeatedly to another, specifically including in an
                   anonymous manner or at extremely inconvenient hours.

VII.    Murder
        a. First Degree Murder
                i. Intentional killings – premeditation and deliberation.
        b. Second Degree Murder
                i. Felony murder
        c. Third Degree Murder
                i. All other kinds of murder are third degree murder.
               ii. A killing done with malice, but without the specific intent to kill.
        d. Voluntary Manslaughter
                i. Heat of Passion: killing under a sudden and intense passion resulting from
                   provocation by the individual killed or another whom the actor actually
                   endeavored to kill when he killed the victim.
               ii. Imperfect Self-Defense killings.
        e. Involuntary Manslaughter
                i. Reckless or grossly negligent killings.
        f. Vehicular Homicide
                i. Requires recklessness or gross negligence. Δ must cause the death of
                   another while violating any state or municipal traffic law.

VIII.   False Imprisonment
        a. Knowingly and unlawfully restraining another so as to substantially interfere with
            his liberty.
        b. Generally a misdemeanor. Felony if victim is under 18.
IX.     Kidnapping
        a. Unlawfully removing another a substantial distance or confining another for a
           substantial period in a place of isolation with the intention to:
                i. Hold the victim for ransom or reward, or as a shield or hostage;
               ii. Inflict bodily injury on or terrorize the victim (or another); or
              iii. To interfere with public officials in the performance of governmental or
                   political functions.

X.      Rape
        a. May be committed by a man or woman.
        b. May be committed against a spouse.

XI.     Statutory Rape
        a. Engaging in sexual intercourse with a victim younger than 16 when:
                i. Δ is at least four years older than V.
               ii. Δ and V are not married.
        b. Mistake of age is a valid defense if the victim is older than 14. It is a defense
            that the defendant reasonably believed the victim was older than she was.

XII.    Bigamy
        a. Bigamy is a crime unless:
               i. The person previously married believes that the prior spouse is dead;
              ii. The person previously married was acting under the mistaken belief that a
                  judicial order of divorce or annulment was valid (when the order was, for
                  whatever reason, actually invalid).

XIII.   Theft
        a. (Theft is the PA equivalent of common-law “Larceny”)

XIV. Theft of Services
     a. Unlawful taking of services that he knows are available only for compensation by
        the use of deception, threat, or other trick or artifice.

XV.     Theft by Deception
        a. (Theft by Deception is the PA equivalent of common-law “False Pretenses”)
        b. Intentionally obtaining or withholding the property of another by deception.
XVI. Robbery
     a. A person commits robbery if, in the course of committing theft, he:
            i. Inflicts bodily injury on another;
           ii. Threatens another with the imminent threat of serious bodily injury; or
          iii. Physically takes or removes property from the person of another by force.

XVII. Receiving Stolen Property
      a. A person receives stolen property if he intentionally receives, retains, or disposes
         of chattels knowing or reasonably believing them to be stolen.
      b. A person does not “receive stolen property” if he takes it with the intent of
         returning it to its rightful owner.

XVIII. Retail Theft
       a. A person commits retail theft if he:
                i. Steals retail merchandise;
               ii. Alters, transfers, or removes markings that aid in determining the value
                   affixed to merchandize and then attempts to purchase the merchandise at
                   less than the full retail value;
              iii. Transfers merchandise from the container in which it is displayed to any
                   other container with intent to deprive the merchant of the full retail value;
              iv. Under-rings a sale with the intent to deprive the merchant of the full retail
                   value of the merchandise; or
               v. Destroys, removes, or deactivates any security mechanism with the intent
                   to deprive the merchant of the possession, use, or benefit of retail
                   merchandise without paying the full retail value thereof.

XIX. Computer Crimes
     a. Unlawful use of a Computer
             i. Access a computer that he is not allowed to use or exceeds permitted
            ii. Destroys any part of a computer or network with the intent to disrupt the
                normal functioning or to control property;
          iii. Intentionally and without permission alter a computer or network; or
           iv. Publish a password without authority or permission.
     b. Computer Trespass
     c. Distribution of a Computer Virus

XX.    Forgery
       a. Altering the writing of another without his authority; may also be execution of a
          writing of another without permission.
XXI. Tampering with Records
     a. Falsifying, destroying, removing, or concealing any writing or record with intent
        to deceive or injure anyone, or to conceal wrongdoing.

XXII. Bad Checks
      a. Issuing or passing a check knowing that it will not be honored by the drawee.

XXIII. Identity Theft
       a. Possessing or using the indentifying information of another without consent, to
          further any unlawful purpose.

XXIV. Burglary
      a. Entering a building or occupied structure with the intent to commit a crime therin.
      b. Note: “building or occupied structure” is any structure, vehicle, or place adapted
         for overnight accommodation or for carrying on business therein.
              i. A fenced-in storage lot is a place adapted for carrying-on business.

XXV. Arson
     a. Arson Endangering Persons: intentionally starting a fire when such action
        recklessly places another person (including firefighters) in danger or death or
        bodily injury, or destroying or damaging an inhabited dwelling house of another.
     b. Arson Endangering Property:

XXVI. Criminal Trespass

XXVII. Perjury
      a. In any official proceeding, making a false statement under oath or affirming the
         truth of a statement previously made, when the statement is material and the
         affiant believes it not to be true.
      b. Perjury must be established through testimony of at least two independent
         witnesses unless the charge is based on inconsistent statements of the Δ.

XXVIII. Bribery
      a. When committed with respect to judicial procedure, it is a felony.

XXIX. Endangering the Welfare of Children
      a. A person who is responsible for supervising a minor child commits a
         misdemeanor by knowingly endangering the welfare of a child by violating a duty
         of care, protection, or support.

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