Mayes v. People (1883)

Procedural History

–          Plaintiff is appealing a lower court decision of murder for a life sentence.

  • Lower court did NOT err because the jury did not believe the daughter and mother-in-law.


–          Plaintiff came home from a bar slightly intoxicated killed his wife.

–          As deceased was leaving the room, he hit her with a beer bottle and a kerosene lamp exploded on her and burnt her – 5 days later she died from the burnings.

–          Plaintiff argues:

  • Pitch the beer out of the doors and not at her.
    • Mother-in-law stated, “He threw at her with a vengeance and heavy tumbler.”
    • Daughter stated, “He picked up the tumbler and threw it with such force that it struck the lamp.”
  • ***Plaintiff argues that he did not have concurrence between his intentions of throwing the bottle and result of killing his wife***
  • He appealed that the jury instructions were wrong because they did not have to show concurrence, but did have to show malice.
    • He wanted full acquittal from the charges….I believe that he wanted in-voluntary manslaughter because he had no intention to kill…
    • He essentially wanted non-criminal homicide.


– Did the plaintiff need to have specific intent in order to be charged with Murder?


– No.


– If you have general malicious recklessness, disregarding any and all consequences…It is sufficient that he manifested a reckless, murderous position….


–          It was implied that by statute, when no considerable provocation appears, or when all the circumstances of the killing show an abandoned and malignant heart…it will be murder.

–          If you do something that is so reckless and has no disregard for someone, and you cause death, you do not have to how concurrence…

–          Hence, grievous bodily harm (Reckless or negligent)

  • You don’t really need m/r for this category.

–          Murder on an account of previous malice, even though did intend to kill his wife.


– Affirmed.

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