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What if someone was shot in one state, but died in the other? Homicide, Murder, Manslaughter

Discussion in 'Criminal Charges' started by Rose Peters, Mar 15, 2019.

  1. Rose Peters

    Rose Peters Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Jurisdiction:
    New Jersey
    Ok, this may not seem relevant because it is simply a hypothetical but, I am doing research on the Aaron Burr, Alexander Hamilton duel, but I have no idea how the laws would be applied. See, Burr shot Hamilton in New Jersey, but Hamilton died in New York, so which states laws would apply? If the New Jersey laws apply, it was technically legal because dueling was legal in New Jersey. But, if New York's laws apply then Burr would be committing a crime because dueling was illegal at the time. If anyone can help me it would be greatly appreciated.

    - A desperate student
     
  2. Tax Counsel

    Tax Counsel Active Member

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    As we know, Burr was not convicted of any crime from the death of Hamilton in the duel. The duel did not take place in NY state, so any law that NY had barring dueling would not have applied. It's where the act took place — the duel — that matters. It's my understanding that NJ did have a law that banned dueling at the time, but that the penalty for it in NJ was not as severe as in NY. In any event, the state that would have the jurisdiction to charge him for the duel and death of Hamilton was NJ.
     
  3. mightymoose

    mightymoose Well-Known Member

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    I agree. Jurisdiction is where the act occurred. It would not matter where the death ultimately occurred.
     
  4. zddoodah

    zddoodah Well-Known Member

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    If the duel/shooting was illegal under NJ law, Burr would have been subject to criminal prosecution in NJ because that's where the incident occurred. However, if, as you wrote, dueling was legal in NJ, then Burr committed no crime. That dueling was illegal in NY is irrelevant since the incident did not take place in NY.

    However, if I'm not greatly mistaken, both Hamilton and Burr were residents of NY, which would mean that two residents of NY chose to go to another state (NJ) to engage in an activity that was legal under NJ law but illegal under NY law. It is possible, depending on the wording of the applicable NY law, that this might have violated the NY law. It's also possible that a federal law could have existed that criminalized traveling interstate for purposes of dueling (I'm analogizing of situations were sex between two persons would be statutory rape in State A but not in State B). It's unlikely that any such federal law existed at that time in history.
     
  5. flyingron

    flyingron Active Member

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    But where do you bury the survivor?
     
  6. Tax Counsel

    Tax Counsel Active Member

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    If you bury the survivor before he's dead, that will create another legal problem for someone. :D
     
  7. mightymoose

    mightymoose Well-Known Member

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    What if he duel happens on the state boundary where the shooter is in the state where it is legal, but the victim is standing in the state where it is illegal?
    Oh no!
     

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