Criminal Minds: The Importance of Defining Intent in Criminal Statutes

Issues and Ideas Forum

Can you be convicted for committing a crime you didn’t know existed? For centuries, our legal tradition required the combination of a guilty act and a guilty mind for a crime to occur. The last several decades, however, have seen an explosion of “public welfare offenses” that diminish a key legal protection – the obligation on the part of the state to prove intent. From environmental regulations to food labeling laws, these state and federal crimes can carry significant penalties. Michigan’s criminal code does not include a default standard for proving intent, leaving the courts to sort out standards for culpability. This Issues and Ideas Forum features Paul Larkin of the Heritage Foundation, Marc Levin of the Texas Public Policy Foundation and Michael Reitz of the Mackinac Center for Public Policy who will discuss the need to define intent in Michigan criminal statutes.

Lunch is free and is included with reservations
WHEN: Dec. 10 at noon —  registration begins at 11:30 a.m.
WHERE: Radisson Hotel Lansing at the Capitol
111 N. Grand Ave. Lansing, MI 48933

If you have any questions or need more information, please contact Event Manager Kimberley Fischer-Kinne at 989-698-1905 or by .

Register to attend.

Deadline to register is Friday, Dec., 6, 2013, at 5 p.m.
Please note: We are unable to guarantee lunch for any guest if the registration is received after the deadline.


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