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Accomplice Liability - Mens Rea

This lesson continues our discussion of accomplice liability. In a prior lesson, we examined how the common law and the Model Penal Code classified various types of accomplices. In another prior lesson, we examined the actus reus requirement for accomplice liability. In this lesson, we continue the discussion by focusing on the mens rea requirement for accomplice liability. The lesson is intended for students who have studied these issues in class, and who wish to refine their understanding and knowledge of the topic.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of the lesson, students will be able to:
1. Discuss the criminal responsibility of accessories by focusing on the mens rea requirement.
2. Compare the basic mens rea requirements under the common law and the Model Penal Code
3. Explain what happens when the principal actor's mens rea varies from that of the accomplice.
4. Analyze the MPC that focuses on whether plaintiff had the "purpose of promoting or facilitating commission of the offense."


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