The Elements of Crime

There are many different crimes that people can commit in today’s society. For each crime there is an actus reus, mens rea, and it is classified as either crime against property, crime against person, or crime against public order. Listed below are kidnapping, robbery, and disorderly conduct. Kidnapping Kidnapping is a crime of unlawfully seizing and carrying away a person by force or seizing and detaining a person against his or her will with intent to carry that person away at a later time.

A person may be kidnapped because the kidnapper may want a ransom, a reward, to use you as a shield or to use you as a hostage. Kidnapping is a felony in the first degree and a person who is convicted of kidnapping is usually sentenced to prison for a certain number of years. If the kidnapper releases the victim then it is a felony in the second degree. In Virginia kidnapping is a class five felony but if the kidnapping is committed by a parent then it is a class one misdemeanor. If the kidnapping is done by a parent and that parent moves the abducted out of Virginia then it is a class six felony (USLEGAL. om, 2010).

There are two key elements that are common to all charges of kidnapping. One is the removal or detention must be unlawful. The second one is that there has to be some aggravating circumstance must accompany the restraint or asportation (Lippman, 2010). The mens rea of kidnapping is thought to be intent to move or to confine the victim without his or her consent. The essence of kidnapping is the actus reus of the forcible movement of a person from one place to another. The central issue is the extent of the movement required.

The traditional rule in American law is that any movement, no matter how limited, is sufficient. Kidnapping is a crime against a person because it is the unlawful and nonconsensual abduction of an individual. An example of kidnapping would be if you are driving home one night and a van pulls up behind you at a red light and two men came up to the vehicle with firearms. You are so shocked that you do not move. The two men forcibly remove you from the driver’s seat, bind your hands, duct tape your mouth shut, blindfold you and throw you into the back of their van.

When police officers arrest a person and take them to jail that is not an example of kidnapping. When a parent restricts a child from going out to a party or out somewhere in general that is not an example of kidnapping. Robbery Robbery is the taking of property from the person or presence of another by force or intimidation with intent to permanently deprive the owner of possession. Robbery differs from theft in that robbery always involves some use of force or threat of force. Robbery is always considered to be a violent crime as well as a more serious crime than theft.

As a result robbery usually results in a felony charge. There are three basic elements of robbery. First there must have been a theft. Second the item must have actually been taken from the victim or from his or her presence. Third the item must have been taken against the victim’s will by actual or threatened force or violence (Lippman, 2010). It is robbery if the threat of force is enough to cause the victim to fear that the force will be used and so keeps him or her from resisting.

The actus reus is that the property must be taken from the person or presence of the victim. The property is considered to be on the person of the victim if it is in his or her hands, pocket, or attached to his or her body such as a necklace or some kind of clothing. The mens rea is that the assailant must possess the intent to permanently deprive an individual of the property. Robbery is a crime against property because robbery is the taking of property from a person. An example is when someone enters my home late at night and points a gun at me.

The assailant tells me to give them all my money and valuables. When the robber takes the money and valuable things then he or she has committed a robbery. Disorderly Conduct Disorderly conduct is the purposeful causing of public inconvenience, annoyance, or alarm. This could include fights, noise, utterances, and hazardous conditions (Lippman, 2010). In Virginia, disorderly conduct is a class one misdemeanor with a maximum penalty of up to one year in jail. The elements of disorderly conduct can vary from one jurisdiction to another.

Acts such as the use of vulgar and obscene language in a public place, loitering, causing a crowd to gather in a public place, or annoying passengers on a mode of public transportation have been regarded as disorderly conduct by statute or ordinance (USLEGAL. com, 2010). The mens rea of disorderly conduct is the reckless disturbance of the peace. The actus reus is the fights, noise, utterances and hazardous conditions. Disorderly conduct is a crime against public order because it can create public inconvenience and annoyance, disturb, and threaten the peace and offend public morality.

An example of disorderly conduct would be someone leaving a bar that is drunk and starts a fight with someone outside the bar. They are arguing loudly using abusive language and they start throwing punches at each other causing people to gather around and watch them fight. In conclusion there are many different crimes that people can commit in today’s society. For each crime there is an actus reus, mens rea, and it is classified as either crime against property, crime against person, or crime against public order. Based on the state these crimes occurred, these crimes can carry different charges and sentencing