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People v. Eulo

Court of Appeals of New York
63 N.Y.2d 341, 472 N.E.2d 286 (1984)



Eulo (defendant) shot a person in the head, causing the victim to go unconscious. At the hospital, the victim was placed on an artificial respirator to continue breathing. It was later determined that the victim’s brain had irreversibly stopped functioning, and that the victim was therefore dead. The victim was taken off the respirator and the victim’s body underwent transplantation procedures for organ donation. At trial, the court did not instruct the jury on when death occurred. It did instruct the jury that the transplantation procedures could have been causes of death that superseded Eulo’s conduct. The jury convicted Eulo of manslaughter. Eulo appealed, arguing that the trial court should have instructed the jury that death occurs when there is an irreversible cessation of breathing and heartbeat.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Cooke, C.J.)

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