Why is George Milton guilty for his role in the death of Lennie Small in Of Mice and Men? George Milton is guilty of first degree murder but explain why he is not charged with the crime.

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

While George Milton intentionally kills Lennie Small, he probably would not be charged with murder because the other men (with the exception of Slim) believe that George has shot Lennie in self-defense. It's also true that they meant to kill Lennie themselves and so are unlikely to report him. Finally, the ranch is remote and vigilante justice appears common in the area (as evidenced by George and Lennie's flight from Weed). George isn't likely to be prosecuted.

As George and Candy look down at Curley's wife in the barn stall, George reasons that the other men need to be told that she's dead. He knows that Lennie is most likely responsible and says that he will return to the bunkhouse—but he tells Candy to wait until he reaches this building and goes inside.

"Then...you come along and make like I never seen her.... So the guys won't think that I was in on it."

Candy agrees to do this. He waits for a while, then he goes up to the bunkhouse and informs the men. When the other men come into...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 838 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team