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LAW162 Criminal Law Hypothetical Assignment

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Added on: 2022-12-23 05:24:14
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Yan-Wei, 70-year-old woman, runs a successful retail business in Liverpool selling Asian groceries. Every day leading up to the event described below, Yan-Wei would take the cash receipts to her bank, located 100 metres from her shop. She routinely walked there through the bustling shopping strip at about 2.30 pm, carrying the cash in a tote bag slung over her shoulder.

Mikey is an ice addict. He worked in a shop across the road from Yan-Wei’s shop until he was sacked for stealing from his employer. Mikey is now dependant on government welfare and is desperate for cash to feed his habit. Mikey recalled that Yan-Wei, an older woman of small stature, walked to the bank with a tote bag every day at the same time. Clearly, that bag must contain the cash takings.

Mikey decided that taking the bag from Yan-Wei would be easy. His plan was that he would wait at the bus stop where he had a clear view of Yan-Wei’s shop and when she left the shop to walk to the bank, he would sprint past and yank the tote bag from her shoulder and keep running around the corner where he could get lost in the crowd of the mall. Easy! No-one gets hurt!

At 2.28 pm, on 24th October 2022, Mikey was waiting at the bus stop, ready to execute his plan. When Yan-Wei exited her shop and headed towards the bank. Mikey sprinted towards Yan-Wei and as he reached her, he grabbed the bag. The bag was slung over her left shoulder, but Yan-Wei was holding onto it with her right hand. The bag did not slide off her shoulder. Instead, when Mikey pulled the bag, Yan-Wei was spun around by the force. Mikey was surprised by this and frustrated that Yan-Wei didn’t simply let go of the bag. He pulled at the bag again, harder, and with a twisting motion, and at the same time with his other hand, he shoved Yan-Wei with all his strength, in the direction of the roadway. Mikey didn’t want to hurt the woman, but he also realised that forcefully shoving a small elderly woman would probably cause her some injury, especially if she fell over from the force. (He recalled his own grandmother had broken her pelvis from a simple fall. She was hospitalised but never recovered, dying a month later.) Still, it couldn’t be helped. He had to get that bag! The simultaneous pulling and shoving worked, and the bag twisted free of Yan-Wei’s grip. Yan- Wei was propelled backwards by the force of the shove three metres onto the roadway and into the path of a bus travelling at 40 kph. The bus driver had no chance to stop in time before impacting with Yan-Wei.

Yan-Wei was taken to hospital with internal injuries from the impact with the bus. Despite competently performed surgery, doctors were unable to stop the internal bleeding and Yan-Wei died on the operating table. It turned out that Yan-Wei had suffered two previous strokes and she took a blood-thinning medication, Warfarin, to help prevent further episodes. Yan-Wei actually took double the prescribed dose, in the belief that this gave her extra protection from strokes. The medical pathologist who performed the autopsy opined that if Yan-Wei had not taken such a high dose of Warfarin, the surgeons would have been able to control the bleeding and she would most likely have survived. The pathologist also reported other injuries unrelated to the impact with the bus. Yan-Wei suffered a broken left clavicle (collar bone), dislocated left shoulder and torn muscles and ligaments around the left shoulder joint. The broken clavicle was caused by a blunt force trauma to the upper chest (ie, the very forceful push) and the shoulder and joint injuries caused by twisting of the arm against the direction of the push when the bag was pulled from her body.

Is Mickey criminally liable for any offences on the foregoing facts? In relation to the death of Yan-Wei, explain why Mikey is or is not liable for murder, manslaughter or statutory manslaughter. Bearing in mind that charges can be presented to the jury as alternatives, make sure that you cover all arguable possibilities for convicting for murder and manslaughter.

  • Uploaded By : Katthy Wills
  • Posted on : December 23rd, 2022
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