State v. Hayes, 105 Mo. 76, 16 S.W. 514 (1891)

Case Name: State v. Hayes
Citation: 105 Mo. 76, 16 S.W. 514 (1891)

Facts: Hayes, the defendant, proposed to Hill to rob a general store. The store was owned by Hill’s relatives but Hill agreed in order to entrap Hayes. Hayes opened up the window and Hill climbed in, handed Hayes a side of bacon. Hayes was then arrested.

State’s argument: Hayes was guilty of burglary because he, with a felonious intent, assisted and aided Hill to enter the building.

Defendant’s argument: Hayes cannot be guilty of the act of Hill because Hill’s act was not criminal. Hill did not enter the store with intent to steal and therefore, Hill did not commit a crime.

Holding: Judgment was reversed and remanded for a new trial on a count of petit larceny for “taking and removing the bacon after it was handed to him.”

Reasoning: The intent of the conspirators matters. “To make defendant responsible for the acts of Hill, they must have had a common motive and common design.”

The Common Law required mutuality or the same mens rea. Under the Model Penal Code (MPC), both parties do not need the same mens rea. Therefore, Hayes could be convicted under the MPC.

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