This is one of a series of lessons on homicide. In earlier lessons, we focused on the crime of murder, examining the common law, modern statutes and the Model Penal Code formulation. In this lesson, we continue our examination of homicide by focusing on the crime of involuntary manslaughter. This lesson is intended for students who have studied these issues in class, and who wish to refine and enhance their knowledge and understanding of the topic.
On completion of the lesson, students will be able to:
1. State the common law definition of manslaughter.
2. Explain the technical requirements of the common law crime of manslaughter.
3. Examine the Model Penal Code's reformulation of the crime of manslaughter, as well as other modern statutory reformulations.
4. Analyze the reasons and justifications for the MPC alterations from the common law.
5. Compare the crime of involuntary manslaughter with the tort of negligence.
6. Discuss the mental state required for the crime of involuntary manslaughter.
7. Apply involuntary manslaughter principles to a fact pattern.