Mitigating Circumstances

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Related to Mitigating Circumstances: Extenuating circumstances

Mitigating Circumstances


(circumstances mitigating responsibility), in criminal law, circumstances attending the commission of a crime and indicating that a particular criminal act or the criminal himself is less socially dangerous than would be the case if such circumstances had not existed.

A distinction is made between mitigating circumstances that are an inseparable element of a crime and those that are not an element of a specific crime. Examples of the former are seen in the instance of a murder that takes place when the bounds of necessary defense are exceeded or in that of a premeditated murder that is committed in a state of severe mental agitation. Examples of the latter, listed in the Criminal Code of the RSFSR (art. 38), include prevention by the guilty person of harmful consequences of the crime committed and commission of the crime under the influence of a threat or compulsion.

The types of mitigating circumstances listed in the law are only intended to be examples. The court may in each specific instance recognize as mitigating circumstances other circumstances revealed during proceedings, such as irreproachable conduct of the accused in the past, military or work honors, or serious illness.

If the criminal law sanctions alternatives, then the presence of mitigating circumstances may serve as grounds for assigning the guilty person a milder punishment from among those indicated by the law, such as correctional labor instead of deprivation of freedom, or for applying a punishment that is shorter in duration. The guilty person may even be assigned a different, milder punishment than that provided by law or assigned a punishment below the statutory minimum set as the approved norm in the criminal law.

The presence of mitigating circumstances may in some cases serve as grounds for releasing the guilty person from criminal responsibility, the case then being transferred to a comrades’ court or the guilty person released on surety.

References in periodicals archive ?
In this case, the privileged mitigating circumstance, based on the motion for reconsideration is the incomplete self-defense and the ordinary circumstances are Pemberton's voluntary surrender and no intention to commit so grave a wrong.
You are instructed that this evidence is presented in order for you to determine, as you will be instructed, (1) whether each aggravating factor is proven beyond a reasonable doubt; (2) whether one or more aggravating factors exist beyond a reasonable doubt; (3) whether the aggravating factors found to exist beyond a reasonable doubt are sufficient to justify the imposition of the death penalty; (4) whether mitigating circumstances are proven by the greater weight of the evidence; (5) whether the aggravating factors outweigh the mitigating circumstances; and (6) whether the defendant should be sentenced to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole or death.
There is a chance the promoter/ venue has a clause in their contract that if something happens which is out of their control there is mitigating circumstances.
15) Poyson then filed a sentencing memorandum, requesting the court find his history of drug and alcohol abuse, troubled childhood, and personality disorders as statutory and non-statutory mitigating circumstances.
The mitigating circumstances that led to the inflated price that were revealed with a detailed geo-technical assessment included soil and slope instability that required the span of the bridge to be extended
Seeking life sentence for convicts, all defence counsels submitted a list of common mitigating circumstances including poverty, young age, no criminal antecedents.
Arguing that there were no mitigating circumstances favouring the accused, the prosecution had demanded Shahzad be sentenced to death.
A final section concludes with a case that highlights the tensions between interpreting the law for equality while remaining sensitive to mitigating circumstances.
html) Digital Spy that there were obvious mitigating circumstances for the delay.
Panel chairman Catherine Elliot said that although there were many aggravating facts to the case, the mitigating circumstances meant they implemented a three-year caution on Davies, who had told the hearing that at this moment in time she did not intend to return to medical practice.
HEARTS claim mitigating circumstances are behind their decision to stand by a player for shameful crimes against a 12 and a 14-year-old girl.
There have to be very powerful mitigating circumstances.