In this scenario, what crime can Tristan be charged with?Tristan went along for a ride with a group of men who intended to commit a robbery. The men went into a victim’s house, tied up and...

In this scenario, what crime can Tristan be charged with?

Tristan went along for a ride with a group of men who intended to commit a robbery. The men went into a victim’s house, tied up and confined her children, and were about to force her to go to her workplace and open a safe that held cash receipts from the business where the woman worked. As they were getting ready to leave the house, local police just happened to drive by and noticed the situation. The group of men, including Tristan fled from the house, and they were subsequently captured. What can Tristan be charged with, and why?

Asked on by lolife

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Ideally, Tristan should not be charged with anything (except maybe evading an officer when he ran).  If he truly did not know what was going to happen, he should not be guilty.  However, in the real world, it is likely that he will charged with whatever crimes all the other men would be charged with.  In this case, it would be some combination of assault, kidnapping, and robbery.  He would be charged as an accomplice.

According to the link I've attached, a person is an accomplice if they are

One who knowingly, voluntarily, and with common intent unites with the principal offender in the commission of a crime. One who is in some way concerned or associated in commission of crime; partaker of guilt; one who aids or assists

Now, in the scenario you have given, Tristan is not really guilty.  He did not go into the house knowing that a crime would be committed.

However, in the real world, he would have a hard time convincing a prosecutor and jury of this unless the other guys all just said that he wasn't guilty.  The jury would probably not believe that he had not known the crime was going to be committed.  They would assume he knew and so they would convict him.

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