CC 1600 Robbery: Intent To Apply Force Is Not An Element
March 30th, 2014
People v. Anderson (2011) 51 Cal. 4th 989, 998-99, held, “the intent element of robbery does not include an intent to apply force against the victim or to cause the victim to feel fear. It is robbery if the defendant committed a forcible act against the victim motivated by the intent to steal, even if the defendant did not also intend for the victim to experience force or fear.” Ibid. The defendant argued that he did not intend to apply force to the victim and therefore the trial court erred in failing to provide a sua sponte instruction on accident where defendant attempted to negate the intent element of the crime. The California Supreme Court held that CC 1600 provides a complete definition of the crime and since accident concerning the use of force added a nonexistent element of intent to the offense of robbery, a defense instruction on accident should not be given even with a defense request.
Tags: CC 1600, Judge Duty to Instruct, Mens Rea: Intent, Robbery, Sua Sponte