Skip to content
Name: People v. Montes
Case #: F040618
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 5 DCA
Opinion Date: 10/31/2003
Subsequent History: 11/25/03 modif. w/ change in jmt; rehrg. den.
Summary

The crime of attempted murder requires an intent to kill. Appellants were convicted of attempted voluntary manslaughter. On appeal, they contended that the trial court erred in instructing the jury that the crime of attempted voluntary manslaughter may be committed by a perpetrator who “either intended to kill the victim, or acted in conscious disregard for life.” The appellate court here agreed and reversed. Notwithstanding the fact that murder may be commited without an intent to kill, it is clear that the crime of attempted murder requires an intent to kill. Likewise, the crime of attempted voluntary manslaughter must also require a specific intent to bring about a desired result (the killing of a human being). Under the circumstances of this case, the error was not harmless. Appellants were charged with, and not convicted of, attempted murder. Appellant fired a weapon, but none of his shots hit the victim. The coappellant stabbed the victim, but not deeply enough to have caused death. Therefore, there is a reasonable probability that the jurors considered both defendants to have acted with conscious disregard for life, but not with an intent to kill.