Law School Discussion

Crim Hypo


Crim Hypo
« on: December 18, 2007, 04:23:36 PM »
Here is a little hypo I need some help with.

Alice takes her car to a mechanic.  She thinks something is wrong with it.  Mechanic looks at...inside his head, he knows there is nothing wrong with Alice's car.  But he decides to lie and say it needs repairs.  He does this because he likes the rims on her car and wants to steal/sell them, and replace them with cheap ones.  He takes the car and parks it in his lot.

Later that day, Alice finds out from a friend that the mechanic is a crook.  With her friend, she goes to mechanic's lot (at night).  She breaks in to the lot, and using her spare key, takes her car (the rims were still there).  While her friend is driving her car off, she runs over and kills the mechanic. 

What could we charge the mechanic with?  What could we charge Alice with? 

Thanks in advance!

Re: Crim Hypo
« Reply #1 on: December 18, 2007, 05:57:07 PM »
I'm definitely not an expert, these are just my thoughts.


Attempted false pretenses with respect to money the mechanic was going to charge Alice for the bogus repairs (if that was his plan). He misrepresented to Alice that the car needed repairs.

Larceny with respect to the hubcaps. There is arguably caption and asportation since he took control of the car and drove it. Failing that, attempted larceny for the hubcaps.


Prosecution might try larceny for the car. I think this would fail though because I don't see how the mechanic could have had a superior possessory interest over the car. The only even vaguely reasonable thing is a mechanic's lien and I don't see any good argument supporting one.

If prosecution could somehow get larceny to stick, then possibly burglary depending on how the burglary statute is written. Otherwise, probably some sort of breaking and entering, with a possible defense raised by the mechanic being a crook, Alice having credible information to that effect, etc.

Also maybe felony murder, depending on how the felony murder statute is written, and assuming the prosecution could stick Alice with a qualifying predicate felony (burglary would probably be a good one).