CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Alexander & Ferzan on Risk and Inchoate Crimes

Ferzan kimberly Larry Alexander and Kimberly Kessler Ferzan (pictured)(University of San Diego School of Law and Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey - School of Law - Camden) have posted Risk and Inchoate Crimes: Retribution or Prevention? (SEEKING SECURITY: PRE-EMPTYING THE COMMISSION OF CRIMINAL HARMS, Forthcoming) on SSRN. Here is the abstract:

In this book chapter we give a definition of inchoate crimes and argue that inchoate crimes, so defined, are not culpable and do not deserve punishment. Our argument against the culpability of inchoate crimes is based on several points: the ability of the actor who intends a future act that might be culpable if performed to change his mind prior to the act’s performance; the conditionality of all future-oriented intentions; uncertainty regarding the culpability-enhancing or culpability-mitigating circumstances that will exist at the future time of performance; and the roles of vacillation and duration in assessing culpability. We argue that punishment for inchoate crimes should be regarded as preventive rather than retributive.

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