Defenses in Greensboro Criminal Court – Entrapment and Necessity

In Criminal by GWAO

Entrapment occurs when a person is entrapped into committing a crime by a law enforcement officer or their agent. Inducing a defendant to commit a crime may be by persuasion, trickery or fraud. The intent to commit the crime must come from the law enforcement officer or agent, and any predisposition to commit the crime bars this defense. The burden is on the defendant, and they must admit to the criminal act. The prosecution may use Rule 404(b) evidence to show the defendant’s predisposition.

Necessity and duress are closely related. These defenses justify an action that would be a crime. Necessity is only available if the act was necessary to commit to save a life or relieve an individual from severe suffering. The action must be reasonable and no other alternatives available. Duress, on the other hand, is an act that is caused by the defendants reasonable fear that they would immediately suffer death or serious harm. Any opportunity to avoid the situation will negate the defense.