Use Quimbee’s Criminal Law Outline and Quickline to ace your final exam in criminal law or supplement your preparation for the Multistate Bar Examination (MBE). Professionally written and fully accessible 24/7 on desktop, tablet, and mobile devices, Quimbee’s Criminal Law Outline covers the criminal justice system in the United States, the elements of a crime, homicide, property crimes, inchoate offenses, defenses, and punishment.
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The Criminal Justice System in the United States
The primary purpose of criminal law in the United States is to keep order in society and hold individuals accountable for violations of a state or federal statutes or state judge-made common law.
Sources of Criminal Law
Criminal laws in the United States may be passed by the federal government or a state government. Keep in mind that the same conduct may violate both a federal and a state law, and a defendant may be tried and punished for violating both without running afoul of the Double Jeopardy Clause of the Fifth Amendment. [See generally U.S. Const. amend. V]
The federal government does not possess police powers empowering it to pass regulations purely to promote the general health, safety, and welfare. Nevertheless, the federal government may enact criminal laws related to specific constitutional grants of authority. Federal crimes may be defined by the Constitution (e.g., treason), federal statutes, or federal...