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2001

Penn State Law

Force

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Full-Text Articles in Law

Rape And Force: The Forgotten Mens Rea, Kit Kinports Jan 2001

Rape And Force: The Forgotten Mens Rea, Kit Kinports

Journal Articles

In rape cases involving physical violence or express threats of physical harm, proof of the actus reus obviously does establish mens rea with respect to force as well as nonconsent. A defendant who beat or threatened to kill his victim could hardly raise a plausible argument that he did not know he was using force. But, in other circumstances, the defendant's mens rea vis-a-vis force may be less clear, and it may therefore make a difference whether a rape conviction requires proof that the defendant purposely intended to use force, or whether it is enough that he knew he ...