The defense of infancy is a form of defense known as an excuse so that defendants falling within the definition of an "infant" are excluded from criminal liability for their actions, if at the relevant time, they had not reached an age of criminal responsibility. After reaching the initial age, there may be levels of responsibility dictated by age and the type of offense committed.
Under the English common law the defense of infancy was expressed as a set of presumptions. A child under the age of seven was presumed incapable of committing a crime. The presumption was conclusive, prohibiting the prosecution from offering evidence that the child had the capacity to appreciate the nature and wrongfulness of what he had done. Children aged seven to fourteen (13 years 364 days 23'59'59" aged) were presumed incapable of committing a crime but the presumption was rebuttable. The prosecution could overcome the presumption by proving that the child understood what he was doing and that it was wrong. Children fourteen and older were presumed capable of committing a crime. However, the child could rebut this presumption by establishing that because of his immaturity he was incapable of understanding what he had done or the wrongfulness of his conduct.
Other articles related to "child imprisonment, child":
... Child crime is different from adult crime in that the offenders are, in most legal systems, not deemed to be fully conscious moral individuals ... solution to juvenile crime is reform of the child ... to reform and the rate of recalcitrance for child offenders under counseling in the US is significantly lower than that of adult offenders ...
... Child crime is different from adult crime in that the offenders are, in most legal systems, not deemed to be fully conscious moral individuals ... The only long term solution to juvenile crime is reform of the child ... are more susceptible to reform and the rate of recalcitrance for child offenders under counseling in the US is significantly lower than that of adult offenders ...
Famous quotes containing the words imprisonment and/or child:
“... imprisonment itself, entailing loss of liberty, loss of citizenship, separation from family and loved ones, is punishment enough for most individuals, no matter how favorable the circumstances under which the time is passed.”
—Mary B. Harris (18741957)
“If she must teem,
Create her child of spleen, that it may live
And be a thwart disnatured torment to her!
Let it stamp wrinkles in her brow of youth,
With cadent tears fret channels in her cheeks,
Turn all her mothers pains and benefits
To laughter and contempt, that she may feel
How sharper than a serpents tooth it is
To have a thankless child!”
—William Shakespeare (15641616)