depraved heart murder

Doc's CJ Glossary by Adam J. McKee
Course: Introduction / Criminal Law

A depraved heart murder is a killing as a result of gross negligence or what the Model Penal Code calls a “wanton disregard for the value of human life.”

A common example of this type of murder is shooting into a train car full of people.  The actor may have had no specific target in mind, but the act was so likely to result in a death that it is just as culpable as a calculated killing of a specific person.

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Last Modified: 07/15/2021


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