Friday, November 15, 2013

Ross v. Mississippi case brief

Ross v. Mississippi case brief summary
601 So.2d 872 (1992)


CASE SYNOPSIS
Defendant challenged the decision of the Union County Circuit Court (Mississippi), which denied his motion for directed verdict and convicted him of attempted rape in violation ofMiss. Code Ann. § 97-1-7 (1972).

CASE FACTS
The complainant lived with her young daughter in a trailer. Defendant stopped at her trailer, pointed a handgun at the complainant, ordered her into the house, told her to undress, and threatened to kill her. She pleaded that her daughter would be home from school soon. Defendant walked the complainant out to the back of her trailer before he left. Defendant claimed that the jury should have been instructed only on a simple assault charge. He asserted that it was not the complainant's resistance that prevented her rape nor any independent intervening cause or third person, but the voluntary and independent decision by defendant to abandon his attack.

DISCUSSION
  • On appeal, the court reversed defendant's conviction because defendant raised a legitimate issue of error in the sufficiency of the evidence supporting his conviction for attempted rape because he voluntarily abandoned the attempt. 
  • An attempt consisted of an intent to commit a particular crime, a direct ineffectual act done toward its commission, and failure to consummate its commission. 
  • The court found that defendant left because he responded sympathetically to the complainant's statement that she had a little girl.

CONCLUSION
The court reversed defendant's conviction.

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