The case in question R. v Beancounter is a case where the accused Carson Beancounter is charged with the offence of second degree murder contrary to the criminal code. Just like in any other trial this case has the prosecution which is represented by the attorney general, the accused as already mentioned and witnesses to give account of events as they know them. There is also the defense counsel whose work is to defend the accused person and prove him innocent and thus have him acquitted of the charges. The following discussion attempts to come up with a winning defense which will lead to the mitigation and eventual acquittal of the accused.
This will be done by punching holes on the evidence given by witnesses on the side of prosecution thus reducing their credibility. One important that will be put in consideration is that all capital offences like murder require a very high standard of proof before the accused can be found guilty. The standard of proof required in such cases is proof beyond reasonable doubt. In establishing a good and winning defence we shall take each witness and punch as many holes in their evidence as is practically possible. By doing so this will ensure that the prosecution is not able to reach the standard of proof required and thus the defence will have it (Curtis, N. 47-50).
The first witness is Morry McFelon a colleague of the deceased whom they were schooling with prior to his death at Crime Ville School. According to Morry the two (Morry and the deceased) were just a night of fun out having watched a movie prior. The witness has given a clear of unfolding events and has mentioned that they went to a shack up the hill. Although the witness states that they had no intention of taking or stealing anything and that they were just curious past records negate this argument. The fact that the deceased had a Youth Court record for assault and threatening is evidence enough that the deceased may have had an intention to commit crime (Flavin, M. 82-85).
It is also possible that the witness is attempting to cover up for the deceased since “birds of a feather flock together” The witness admits that during the occurrence of events which lead to the death of the deceased he(the witness) was very confused. It therefore possible that he may have forgotten some details and even more probable is that he could be making a mistake even as to the identity of the accused. When the crime occurred the witness was not in a very stable mental condition and as a result there is high probability that the witness is making confusions as to the identity of the accused (Nielsen, H. 101-104).
The second witness is a Detective Sergeant who is a member of Yourtown Police Service with which the deceased had been charged with crimes of assault and issuing threats to fellow students. The Sergeant has been in the service for the last 25 years and has within that time dealt with many homicide cases, forty to be precise and is therefore a qualified expert crime scene investigator. The Sergeant gives a very detailed account of events as they are known to him. At one point the Sergeant mentions that during her investigations she noticed a house that was on the same property as the garage where the body of the deceased was found.
Upon knocking some enquiries the Sergeant mentions that it was clear that the accused person had been drinking although it was not possible to establish the amount of drink consumed. That in essence means that any comment made by the accused at that time could not be said to be credible as he was not in his right state of mind. The Sergeant has also mentioned that the accused was generally cooperative. This means that the accused had nothing to hide and that is why he cooperated with the police (Curtis, N. 34-36).
The third witness is the accused himself. Records from the criminal department indicate that he has not had any criminal records in the past. This means that the probability of being responsible in this case is low. In addition he has been a member of Neighborhood Watch Program, which is program to deter criminal activities within the neighborhood.
This is an interpretation that the accused is a law abiding citizen. From the account given by the accused it is quite clear that there was no prior mediation to commit the crime. In a case of murder the prosecution must be able to prove that not only was the crime committed but also that there was an intention by the accused to commit the crime. In this case there was no intention as the accused states that he acted at the sour of moment (Flavin, M. 67-70).
Legally this is referred to as the heat of passion. The accused says that there was a number of stuff that was of great value and from the earlier reports he dreaded to have the garage broken into. The behavior of the accused also goes along way in showing that actually the accused meant no harm. During investigations police officers state that the accused was cooperative. The accused is also said to have shown signs of regret and remorse on his conduct. This means that he actually did not intend to commit any crime but was scared by the fact that the deceased mentioned that he had a gun.
If we look at the provisions of the law a person is justified upon commission of assault if he was in apprehension of death or grievous bodily harm The accused says that he was scared when he heard the deceased say that he had a gun and this made him respond in the manner that he did. Secondly a person is justified in suing force to defend himself or his property if he truly believes that he is in danger.
Section 40 of the Criminal code states “Every one who is in peaceable possession of a dwelling house, and every one lawfully assisting him or acting under his authority, is justified in using as much force as is necessary to prevent any person from forcibly entering into or forcibly entering the dwelling house without lawful authority.”
In conclusion using the basis of the law the accused ought to be acquitted in consideration of all the facts and evidence adduced. It is clear that the prosecution cannot sustain the required standard of proof as there are many holes that are punched in the evidence given by witnesses most f which have the basis of the criminal code. The defence thus wins the case and the accused is acquitted.