- Jonathan HerringJonathan HerringProfessor of Law, Exeter College, University of Oxford
Each Concentrate revision guide is packed with essential information, key cases, revision tips, exam Q&As, and more. Concentrates show you what to expect in a law exam, what examiners are looking for, and how to achieve extra marks. This chapter discusses murder, arguably the most serious crime in English law. Murder is where D kills V, and D intends to kill or intends to cause grievous bodily harm (GBH). The most common criticism of the offence of murder is that the sentence is mandatory irrespective of whether the mens rea is the more serious form (intent to kill) or the less serious form (intent to cause GBH). There were three partial defences to murder under the Homicide Act 1957 (diminished responsibility, provocation, and suicide pact). There are three partial defences to murder under the Homicide Act 1957 as amended and the Coroners and Justice Act 2009; diminished responsibility, loss of self-control, and suicide pact. The chapter considers the first two in detail. These are partial defences because they result in a conviction for manslaughter rather than a full acquittal.