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H.B. 93

             1     

CAPITAL OFFENSES AMENDMENTS

             2     
2007 GENERAL SESSION

             3     
STATE OF UTAH

             4     
Chief Sponsor: Paul Ray

             5     
Senate Sponsor: D. Chris Buttars

             6      Cosponsor:Carl Wimmer              7     
             8      LONG TITLE
             9      General Description:
             10          This bill modifies the Criminal Code regarding the elements of aggravated murder as
             11      related to the homicide of a child.
             12      Highlighted Provisions:
             13          This bill:
             14          .    provides that the commission or attempt to commit specified offenses, including
             15      sexual offenses, against a child as a part of the commission of the homicide
             16      constitutes aggravated murder, whether or not the specified offenses were
             17      committed intentionally or knowingly.
             18      Monies Appropriated in this Bill:
             19          None
             20      Other Special Clauses:
             21          None
             22      Utah Code Sections Affected:
             23      AMENDS:
             24          76-5-202, as last amended by Chapter 191, Laws of Utah 2006
             25          76-5-203, as last amended by Chapter 348, Laws of Utah 2006
             26     
             27      Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:


             28          Section 1. Section 76-5-202 is amended to read:
             29           76-5-202. Aggravated murder.
             30          (1) Criminal homicide constitutes aggravated murder if the actor intentionally or
             31      knowingly causes the death of another under any of the following circumstances:
             32          (a) the homicide was committed by a person who is confined in a jail or other
             33      correctional institution;
             34          (b) the homicide was committed incident to one act, scheme, course of conduct, or
             35      criminal episode during which two or more persons were killed, or during which the actor
             36      attempted to kill one or more persons in addition to the victim who was killed;
             37          (c) the actor knowingly created a great risk of death to a person other than the victim
             38      and the actor;
             39          (d) the homicide was committed incident to an act, scheme, course of conduct, or
             40      criminal episode during which the actor committed or attempted to commit aggravated robbery,
             41      robbery, rape, [rape of a child,] object rape, [object rape of a child,] forcible sodomy, [sodomy
             42      upon a child,] forcible sexual abuse, [sexual abuse of a child, aggravated sexual abuse of a
             43      child, child abuse as defined in Subsection 76-5-109 (2)(a),] or aggravated sexual assault,
             44      aggravated arson, arson, aggravated burglary, burglary, aggravated kidnapping, or kidnapping[,
             45      or child kidnapping];
             46          (e) the homicide was committed incident to one act, scheme, course of conduct, or
             47      criminal episode during which the actor committed the crime of abuse or desecration of a dead
             48      human body as defined in Subsection 76-9-704 (2)(e);
             49          (f) the homicide was committed for the purpose of avoiding or preventing an arrest of
             50      the defendant or another by a peace officer acting under color of legal authority or for the
             51      purpose of effecting the defendant's or another's escape from lawful custody;
             52          (g) the homicide was committed for pecuniary or other personal gain;
             53          (h) the defendant committed, or engaged or employed another person to commit the
             54      homicide pursuant to an agreement or contract for remuneration or the promise of remuneration
             55      for commission of the homicide;
             56          (i) the actor previously committed or was convicted of:
             57          (i) aggravated murder, Section 76-5-202 ;
             58          (ii) attempted aggravated murder, Section 76-5-202 ;


             59          (iii) murder, Section 76-5-203 ;
             60          (iv) attempted murder, Section 76-5-203 ; or
             61          (v) an offense committed in another jurisdiction which if committed in this state would
             62      be a violation of a crime listed in this Subsection (1)(i);
             63          (j) the actor was previously convicted of:
             64          (i) aggravated assault, Subsection 76-5-103 (2);
             65          (ii) mayhem, Section 76-5-105 ;
             66          (iii) kidnapping, Section 76-5-301 ;
             67          (iv) child kidnapping, Section 76-5-301.1 ;
             68          (v) aggravated kidnapping, Section 76-5-302 ;
             69          (vi) rape, Section 76-5-402 ;
             70          (vii) rape of a child, Section 76-5-402.1 ;
             71          (viii) object rape, Section 76-5-402.2 ;
             72          (ix) object rape of a child, Section 76-5-402.3 ;
             73          (x) forcible sodomy, Section 76-5-403 ;
             74          (xi) sodomy on a child, Section 76-5-403.1 ;
             75          (xii) aggravated sexual abuse of a child, Section 76-5-404.1 ;
             76          (xiii) aggravated sexual assault, Section 76-5-405 ;
             77          (xiv) aggravated arson, Section 76-6-103 ;
             78          (xv) aggravated burglary, Section 76-6-203 ;
             79          (xvi) aggravated robbery, Section 76-6-302 ; or
             80          (xvii) an offense committed in another jurisdiction which if committed in this state
             81      would be a violation of a crime listed in this Subsection (1)(j);
             82          (k) the homicide was committed for the purpose of:
             83          (i) preventing a witness from testifying;
             84          (ii) preventing a person from providing evidence or participating in any legal
             85      proceedings or official investigation;
             86          (iii) retaliating against a person for testifying, providing evidence, or participating in
             87      any legal proceedings or official investigation; or
             88          (iv) disrupting or hindering any lawful governmental function or enforcement of laws;
             89          (l) the victim is or has been a local, state, or federal public official, or a candidate for


             90      public office, and the homicide is based on, is caused by, or is related to that official position,
             91      act, capacity, or candidacy;
             92          (m) the victim is or has been a peace officer, law enforcement officer, executive
             93      officer, prosecuting officer, jailer, prison official, firefighter, judge or other court official, juror,
             94      probation officer, or parole officer, and the victim is either on duty or the homicide is based on,
             95      is caused by, or is related to that official position, and the actor knew, or reasonably should
             96      have known, that the victim holds or has held that official position;
             97          (n) the homicide was committed:
             98          (i) by means of a destructive device, bomb, explosive, incendiary device, or similar
             99      device which was planted, hidden, or concealed in any place, area, dwelling, building, or
             100      structure, or was mailed or delivered; or
             101          (ii) by means of any weapon of mass destruction as defined in Section 76-10-401 ;
             102          (o) the homicide was committed during the act of unlawfully assuming control of any
             103      aircraft, train, or other public conveyance by use of threats or force with intent to obtain any
             104      valuable consideration for the release of the public conveyance or any passenger, crew
             105      member, or any other person aboard, or to direct the route or movement of the public
             106      conveyance or otherwise exert control over the public conveyance;
             107          (p) the homicide was committed by means of the administration of a poison or of any
             108      lethal substance or of any substance administered in a lethal amount, dosage, or quantity;
             109          (q) the victim was a person held or otherwise detained as a shield, hostage, or for
             110      ransom;
             111          (r) the homicide was committed in an especially heinous, atrocious, cruel, or
             112      exceptionally depraved manner, any of which must be demonstrated by physical torture, serious
             113      physical abuse, or serious bodily injury of the victim before death; or
             114          (s) the actor dismembers, mutilates, or disfigures the victim's body, whether before or
             115      after death, in a manner demonstrating the actor's depravity of mind.
             116          (2) Criminal homicide constitutes aggravated murder if the actor causes the death of
             117      another incident to an act, scheme, course of conduct, or criminal episode during which the
             118      actor committed or attempted to commit:
             119          (a) child abuse, Subsection 76-5-109 (2)(a) or (b);
             120          (b) child kidnapping, Section 76-5-301.1 ;


             121          (c) rape of a child, Section 76-5-402.1 ;
             122          (d) object rape of a child, Section 76-5-402.3 ;
             123          (e) sodomy on a child, Section 76-5-403.1 ; or
             124          (f) sexual abuse or aggravated sexual abuse of a child, Section 76-5-404.1 .
             125          [(2)] (3) Aggravated murder is a capital felony.
             126          [(3)] (4) (a) It is an affirmative defense to a charge of aggravated murder or attempted
             127      aggravated murder that the defendant caused the death of another or attempted to cause the
             128      death of another:
             129          (i) under the influence of extreme emotional distress for which there is a reasonable
             130      explanation or excuse; or
             131          (ii) under a reasonable belief that the circumstances provided a legal justification or
             132      excuse for his conduct although the conduct was not legally justifiable or excusable under the
             133      existing circumstances.
             134          (b) Under Subsection [(3)] (4)(a)(i), emotional distress does not include:
             135          (i) a condition resulting from mental illness as defined in Section 76-2-305 ; or
             136          (ii) distress that is substantially caused by the defendant's own conduct.
             137          (c) The reasonableness of an explanation or excuse under Subsection [(3)] (4)(a)(i) or
             138      the reasonable belief of the actor under Subsection [(3)] (4)(a)(ii) shall be determined from the
             139      viewpoint of a reasonable person under the then existing circumstances.
             140          (d) This affirmative defense reduces charges only as follows:
             141          (i) aggravated murder to murder; and
             142          (ii) attempted aggravated murder to attempted murder.
             143          Section 2. Section 76-5-203 is amended to read:
             144           76-5-203. Murder.
             145          (1) As used in this section, "predicate offense" means:
             146          (a) a violation of Section 58-37d-4 or 58-37d-5 , Clandestine Drug Lab Act;
             147          (b) child abuse, under Subsection 76-5-109 (2)(a), when the victim is younger than 18
             148      years of age;
             149          (c) kidnapping under Section 76-5-301 ;
             150          (d) child kidnapping under Section 76-5-301.1 ;
             151          (e) aggravated kidnapping under Section 76-5-302 ;


             152          (f) rape of a child under Section 76-5-402.1 ;
             153          (g) object rape of a child under Section 76-5-402.3 ;
             154          (h) sodomy upon a child under Section 76-5-403.1 ;
             155          (i) forcible sexual abuse under Section 76-5-404 ;
             156          (j) sexual abuse of a child or aggravated sexual abuse of a child under Section
             157      76-5-404.1 ;
             158          (k) rape under Section 76-5-402 ;
             159          (l) object rape under Section 76-5-402.2 ;
             160          (m) forcible sodomy under Section 76-5-403 ;
             161          (n) aggravated sexual assault under Section 76-5-405 ;
             162          (o) arson under Section 76-6-102 ;
             163          (p) aggravated arson under Section 76-6-103 ;
             164          (q) burglary under Section 76-6-202 ;
             165          (r) aggravated burglary under Section 76-6-203 ;
             166          (s) robbery under Section 76-6-301 ;
             167          (t) aggravated robbery under Section 76-6-302 ;
             168          (u) escape or aggravated escape under Section 76-8-309 ; or
             169          (v) a felony violation of Subsection 76-10-508 (2) regarding discharge of a firearm or
             170      dangerous weapon.
             171          (2) Criminal homicide constitutes murder if:
             172          (a) the actor intentionally or knowingly causes the death of another;
             173          (b) intending to cause serious bodily injury to another, the actor commits an act clearly
             174      dangerous to human life that causes the death of another;
             175          (c) acting under circumstances evidencing a depraved indifference to human life, the
             176      actor engages in conduct which creates a grave risk of death to another and thereby causes the
             177      death of another;
             178          (d) (i) the actor is engaged in the commission, attempted commission, or immediate
             179      flight from the commission or attempted commission of any predicate offense, or is a party to
             180      the predicate offense;
             181          (ii) a person other than a party as defined in Section 76-2-202 is killed in the course of
             182      the commission, attempted commission, or immediate flight from the commission or attempted


             183      commission of any predicate offense; and
             184          (iii) the actor acted with the intent required as an element of the predicate offense;
             185          (e) the actor recklessly causes the death of a peace officer while in the commission or
             186      attempted commission of:
             187          (i) an assault against a peace officer under Section 76-5-102.4 ; or
             188          (ii) interference with a peace officer while making a lawful arrest under Section
             189      76-8-305 if the actor uses force against a peace officer;
             190          (f) commits a homicide which would be aggravated murder, but the offense is reduced
             191      pursuant to Subsection 76-5-202 [(3)] (4); or
             192          (g) the actor commits aggravated murder, but special mitigation is established under
             193      Section 76-5-205.5 .
             194          (3) (a) Murder is a first degree felony.
             195          (b) A person who is convicted of murder shall be sentenced to imprisonment for an
             196      indeterminate term of not less than 15 years and which may be for life.
             197          (4) (a) It is an affirmative defense to a charge of murder or attempted murder that the
             198      defendant caused the death of another or attempted to cause the death of another:
             199          (i) under the influence of extreme emotional distress for which there is a reasonable
             200      explanation or excuse; or
             201          (ii) under a reasonable belief that the circumstances provided a legal justification or
             202      excuse for his conduct although the conduct was not legally justifiable or excusable under the
             203      existing circumstances.
             204          (b) Under Subsection (4)(a)(i) emotional distress does not include:
             205          (i) a condition resulting from mental illness as defined in Section 76-2-305 ; or
             206          (ii) distress that is substantially caused by the defendant's own conduct.
             207          (c) The reasonableness of an explanation or excuse under Subsection (4)(a)(i) or the
             208      reasonable belief of the actor under Subsection (4)(a)(ii) shall be determined from the
             209      viewpoint of a reasonable person under the then existing circumstances.
             210          (d) This affirmative defense reduces charges only as follows:
             211          (i) murder to manslaughter; and
             212          (ii) attempted murder to attempted manslaughter.





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