State v. Jackson

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Criminal Law
  • Date Filed: 08-29-2012
  • Case #: A144967
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Brewer, J. for the Court; Ortega, P.J.; and Sercombe, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

A defendant is entitled to an instruction on a lesser-included offense when the requisite mental state is a disputed issue of fact that would allow the jury to find that all the elements of the greater offense have not been proven, but that all the elements of one or more of the lesser offenses have been proven.

Defendant appealed a conviction of second-degree assault. Defendant was involved in a fight with an individual who beat Defendant and slammed Defendant's head into the pavement multiple times. A friend of the individual entered the fray and was attacked by Defendant who wielded his pocket knife. Defendant ended up stabbing the friend in the back. At trial, Defendant claimed that as a result of the beating he suffered, he was not coherent and therefore he did not "knowingly" use the knife to cause physical injury. Defendant requested a jury instruction on the lesser-included offense of fourth-degree assault. The trial court declined. The Court of Appeals stated that while the jury did not have to believe Defendant's story, they could have adopted a composite theory incorporating the defense's and the State's theories thus allowing Defendant's theory that he intended to cause injury but didn't know he was using a knife. The Court applied Leckenby and Boyce in deciding that where the mental state is the disputed issue of fact, the lesser-included offense instruction should be given. Conviction for second-degree assault reversed and remanded; remanded for resentencing; otherwise affirmed.

Advanced Search