Legal Impossibility
  • If the defendant did everything he/she wanted, it would still not be a crime (shooting a stuffed deer thinking it was real). (pro-defense)
  • See Sherlock Holmes' dummy shot by Col. Moran in The Empty House.
Factual Impossibility
  • Due to circumstances unknown to defendant, the crime is impossible to complete. (pro-prosecutor)
MPC Rule
  • If it would be criminal if the facts were as the defendant thought they were, then no defense.
Legal vs. Factual: really just legal sophistry
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