Taking Voluntariness Seriously

69 Pages Posted: 23 Apr 2013 Last revised: 28 Sep 2013

Ian P. Farrell

University of Denver Sturm College of Law

Justin F. Marceau

University of Denver Sturm College of Law

Date Written: April 22, 2013

Abstract

The near-unanimous belief among courts and commentators that the criminal law contains a voluntary act requirement obscures deep disagreement about the meaning, scope, and application of that requirement. This Article explores these longstanding and vexing theoretical disagreements, identifies practical problems that result from these uncertainties, and suggests a novel framework for substantially resolving the confusion. The resolution of these questions is no mere academic exercise. The difference in many cases, particularly strict liability prosecutions, will be the difference between guilt and innocence.

Suggested Citation

Farrell, Ian P. and Marceau, Justin F., Taking Voluntariness Seriously (April 22, 2013). Boston College Law Review, Forthcoming; U Denver Legal Studies Research Paper No. 13-25. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2255141 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2255141

Ian P. Farrell

University of Denver Sturm College of Law ( email )

2255 E. Evans Avenue
Denver, CO 80208
United States

Justin F. Marceau (Contact Author)

University of Denver Sturm College of Law ( email )

2255 E. Evans Avenue
Denver, CO 80208
United States

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