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Jaime is a 23 year old college student. He has returned home for his summer break and taken a job as a lifeguard at the local swim park. His 14 year old sister, Cersei, often tags along. One day Cersei is at the park and she cannot find her brother. The other lifeguards explain that he has gone “on break.” Cersei looks for her brother everywhere. Eventually she enters the employee lounge area where she finds Jaime hooking up with her classmate, Mary (also 14).

Jaime and Mary are both fully clothed, but Jaime’s hand is inside Mary’s bathing suit top. Jamie looks up and sees his sister staring at him. In a panic, he grabs her and locks her in the storage closet. Eventually Cersei manages to escape. She goes home and tells her mother what she saw. Her mother is appalled, but is curious as to why Cersei is so angry. She questions Cersei further, and Cersei admits that she has been having sex with Jaime since the beginning of summer. She explains to her mom that she loves Jaime, and always has. She doesn’t understand how her best friend, Mary, could betray her.

Cersei’s mom is shocked and immediately calls her husband. He rushes home. When Jaime walks in a few hours later, he finds his mother and father waiting for him. Jaime can tell that they know. Jaime looks directly at his father, shrugs his shoulders and winks. Without a word Jaime’s father grabs the nearest item, a tennis racket, and begins to beat Jaime with it. Jaime fights back. Jaime is a well-built young man; his father is a feeble man. When the dust settles, Jaime has a few bruises, but his father has suffered a broken hip, several broken ribs, a punctured lung, and a shattered jaw.

Instructions:

Assuming Florida law applies, list all of the crimes that could be charged based on the facts above. Be sure to include the name of the offender, the charged offense, and the category of the crime (include the statute number). Explain why the charges are appropriate based on the statutory definition of the crime and the facts from the story . (Do not simply copy and paste the entire statute in your response. Use only the portions that are relevant.) Once you have listed all of the possible crimes, re-evaluate the facts and try to establish some defenses. (Not all crimes will have a valid defense).

Sample Answer :

Leah should be charged with aggravated battery, a 2d degree felony under Florida law.  Florida statute 784.045 defines aggravated battery as “intentionally or knowingly causing great bodily harm.” Leah punched her ex-boyfriend in the face until she broke every bone in his face.  Because breaking her ex’s face is considered great bodily harm, Leah is guilty of aggravated battery.  Leah may want to argue heat of passion as a defense. Heat of passion requires adequate provocation, actual heat and a lack of time to “cool down.” Leah walked in on her ex and her sister in bed together, she screamed and immediately began punching him in the face. Because the betrayal would be considered to be adequate provocation and induced actual heat (evidenced by the screaming and punching) and because the attack occurred “immediately” after seeing them, this would be considered a crime of passion.


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