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paupers (1), causing death, has been held to be CULPABLE
Any blame con
It is impossible to enumerate the cases of this sort. However slight the injury, and however much ground stitutes guilt. there may be to hold that but for some existing disease or weakness it would have had no bad result, the person inflicting it must answer for the consequences. "Any blame" is enough (2).
on which person
Cases may also be supposed of a very indirect char- Indirect cases. acter. It is culpable homicide if a husband attack Husband's viohis wife violently, and she fall, and the child in her wife to injure arms is killed. It has even been held to be culpable homicide if the violence in such a case is so great as to compel the woman to squeeze the child so tightly as to kill it (3). If a person flog the horse on which Flogging horse another was riding, so that it run off and kill him, riding. he commits culpable homicide (4). Forcing children to leave a house or ship in cold weather, where there was risk that they might perish before they could reach any other place of shelter, would infer guilt of culpable homicide if life were lost in consequence (5). It might even be held culpable homicide, if in consequence of alarm created by violence, the sufferer himself were to do some act from which his death resulted-e.g., if a person when pursued by another Person in terror armed with a murderous weapon were, in terror, throwing himand seeing no other means of escape, to throw himself into water, and thus were drowned (6).
self into water.
Third, culpable homicide may result from neglect of proper precautions, or moderation in the doing of
1 Will. Hardie, Stirling, April 10th 1847; Ark. 247.
2 Rob. M'Anally, Glasgow, April 27th 1836; 1 Swin. 210 and Bell's Notes 77 (Lord Mackenzie's charge).
3 Hugh Mitchell, H.C., Nov. 7th 1856; 2 Irv. 488.
4 See the case of David Keay, Stirling, Sept. 16th 1837; I Swin.
543 and Bell's Notes 88, where this
5 Rob. Watt and Jas. Kerr,
6 See Hume i. 235, 236: case of Graham there.-John Robertson, Perth, May 8th 1854; 1 Irv. 469 (Lord Handyside's opinion).
what is legal, or from general carelessness and neglect
NEGLECT OF DUTY of duty. Here, also, the cases that have happened
are outnumbered by those that may be supposed. Any substantial They include every fatal accident which is not fortuitous, but results from some blameable conduct. The same rule applies here as in the case of direct injury; if there be blame "at all," that is enough (1). A summary of the cases which have occurred will afford the best commentary on this branch. As regards Excess of corpo- culpable homicide by exceeding moderation in the performance of duty, almost the only case which occurs is that of a person entitled to inflict corporal chastisement, causing death in doing so (2). Cases of culpable negligence or rashness are more numerous. Management of If death result from fault or negligence in the man
agement of vehicles, culpable homicide is committed, whether the cause be rash driving (3), or drivers leaving their vehicles without any one to take charge of them, or entrusting the reins to an unskilled person (4), or the like. Railway officials are responsible for accidents. caused by carelessness (5). And those in charge of
1 George Murray, Aberdeen, Oct. 21st 1840; Bell's Notes 77.
2 Hume i. 237, 238, and case of Carmichael there.-More ii. 369.— Dav. Paterson, H.C., July 17th 1838; 2 Swin. 175 and Bell's Notes 79. See also Edward Evans and Jas. Denwood, H.C., Feb. 24th 1873; 2 Couper 410, where a master of a vessel was convicted of. culpable homicide, inter alia, by beating a seaman to force him to work.
3 Hume i. 192, note 2: several cases. -Alison i. 118, 119: several cases besides those in Hume.More ii. 369. Adam Stoddart, Jan. 11th 1836; Bell's Notes 73.-Jas. Matheson, H.C., Nov. 20th 1837; 1 Swin. 593 and Bell's Notes 70.Will. Messon, Perth, April 29th 1841; 2 Swin. 548.-Will. Trotter,
Oct. 5th 1842; Bell's Notes 74.-
4 Hume i. 192: case of Jackson in note 2.-Arch. Gowans, Glasgow, Jan. 1831; Bell's Notes 70.-Adam Stoddart, Jan. 11th 1836; Bell's Notes 73.-John M'Arthur, Stirling, April 1841; Bell's Notes 74.-Alex. Smith, Ayr, April 11th 1842; 1 Broun 220.-Geo. Wood, jun., and Alex. King, Aberdeen, April 15th 1842; 1 Broun 262 and Bell's Notes 71.--John Ross and others, Inverness, April 14th 1847; Ark. 258.
5 James Boyd, H.C., Jan. 7th 1842; 1 Broun 7 and Bell's Notes 71 (driving at excessive speed past level crossing), James Cooper, Glasgow, Sept. 19th 1842; 1 Broun
vessels or boats are answerable for culpable conduct CULPABLE causing loss of life whether to those on board their NEGLECT OF DUTY own vessel (1), or those in other vessels or boats (2). The same rule applies in operations with machinery, Machinery. such as the management of coal-pit engines or lifts, cranes, diving-bells, and similar apparatus (3), or
389 and Bell's Notes 73 (pointsman not having switches in order). Will. Paton and Richard M'Nab, H.C., Nov. 3d, 4th, and 8th 1845; 2 Broun 525 (superintendent of locomotives allowing defective engine to be used and driver using it). -Chas. Ormond and Will. Wyllie, Glasgow, May 11th 1848; Ark. 483 (careless coupling).-John M'Donald and others, H.C., Mar. 24th 1853; 1 Irv. 164 (neglect to signal, and neglect to clear line when fast train due).-Will. Lyall and Alex. Ramsay, H.C., Mar. 25th 1853; 1 Irv. 189 (improper starting of train). -Thos. Smith, H.C., July 23d 1853; 1 Irv. 271 (rash driving of train following another train, and neglect of signals. This was a case of injury only, but if death had resulted it would have been culpable homicide). Thos. K. Robotham and others, H.C., Mar. 15th to 19th 1855; 2 Irv. 89 and 27 S.J. 338 (neglect to issue proper regulations- improper starting of trains in rapid succession).-Will. M'Intosh and Will. Wilson, H.C., Mar. 17th to 19th 1855; 2 Irv. 136 (improper starting of train).—John Latto, H.C., Nov. 9th 1857; 2 Irv. 732 (signalling train to advance when points not open-a case of injury only). Alex. Robertson, H.C., Feb. 8th 1859; 3 Irv. 328 (neglect of signal).-Will. Dudley, H.C., Feb. 15th 1864; 4 Irv. 468 and 36 S.J. 332 (driver leaving engine and neglecting precautions-part of the indictment was found irrelevant).-Will. Baillie and Jas.
M'Currach, H.C., June 27th and 28th 1870; 1 Couper 442 (stationmaster sending extra train after another without signal for "train "following" on the first, and stationmaster leaving station without any properly instructed person in charge).-Alex. Currie and Rob. Ramsay, H.C., Jan. 13th 1873; 2 Couper 380 (signalman improperly lowering signal, and stationmaster shunting goods train on to main line when express train coming.
1 John Sutherland, Mar. 15th 1838; Bell's Notes 74 (allowing a boat to be overloaded). - Thos. Henderson and others, H. C., Aug. 29th 1850; J. Shaw 394 (master improperly leaving deck, and mate running vessel on rock by taking a short course to save time).
2 Hume i. 193, case of M'Innes, in note a.-Alison i. 125, 126 and cases of Smith and others: and Struthers there. -Ezekiel M'Haffie, Court of Admiralty, Nov. 26th 1827; Syme Appx. 3 p. 38.-Will. M'Alister and others, H.C., Nov. 20th 1837; 1 Swin. 587.-Rob. M'Lean, Glasgow, Sept. 21st 1842; 1 Broun 416.-Angus M'Pherson and John Stewart, Inverness, Sept. 24th 1861; 4 Irv. 85.
3 Rob. Young, H.C., May 20th 1839; 2 Swin. 376 and Bell's Notes 73 (diving-bell). Rob. Rouatt, Glasgow, Sept. 30th 1852; 1 lrv. 79 (coal-pit machinery).-Geo. S. Stenhouse and Arch. M'Kay, H.C., Nov. 8th 1852; 1 Irv. 94 (defective chain in ironstone pit).
when child was in it.
operations with dangerous materials, as in blasting (1), NEGLECT OF DUTY or ordinary operations requiring special caution, such Throwing down as throwing down materials from a high building in a rubbish.
public place, or felling trees close to a public road (2). Felling trees. Defective build- The same rule extends to all cases where, by negligent ins, embanking, construction or management, contractors for works Sale of drugs, cause loss of life (3). A druggist who entrusts his
shop to an unskilful person, and the person who, being ignorant, undertakes to sell drugs without
proper instructions, are both guilty of culpable homiGiving overdose cide if death result (4). A person employed to sell of drug.
drugs, but not to dispense them, who prescribed and administered an excessive dose of poisonous medicine which caused death, was held guilty of culpable
homicide (5). Folding up a bed Lastly, as an illustration of the small amount of
blame which may constitute culpable homicide, a case may be noticed where the accused was charged with folding up a bed in which a child was lying and causing its death. The Jury found the accused
guilty of culpable homicide as libelled, with this
explanation that she did not know when she folded “up the bed that the child was in it, and that she did “not give the thought she ought to have done before
folding up the bed.” This was held to be a good verdict of culpable homicide (6).
1 Alison i. 116 : case of Johnston 4 Rob. Henderson and Will. Law. and Webster there.—John Drysdale son, H.C., June 13th 1842; 1 Broun and others, H.C., March 13th 1848 ; 360 and Bell's Notes 71 and 76. Ark. 440.-Jas. Auld, Aberdeen, The case was certified from the Sept. 23d 1856 ; 2 Irv. 459 and 29 Circuit Court at Perth by Lords S.J., 3.
Moncrieff and Cockburn. Lord 2 Hume i. 192 and case of Gra- Cockburn's MSS. contains the folham in note 2.
lowing note :-“We certified on 3 Hugh M'Clure and others, “ the score of the admitted novelty H.C., Mar. 15th 1848 ; Ark 448 (bad “ of the case, but there never was construction of railway and bridge). “a clearer case of relevancy.' --Jas. Kirkpatrick and Rob. 5 Edmund F. Wheatly, Glasgow, Stewart, Dumfries, Sept. 1840; May 6th 1853 ; 1 Irv. 225.-See Bell's Notes 71 (bank of earth also Hume i. 193, 194. giving way). - John Wilson, Glas- 6 Williamina Sutherland, Invergow, Sept. 30th 1852; 1 Iry, 84 ness, Sept. 18th 1856 ; 2 Irv. (insufficient building).
reins to an un
In such cases it is not necessary that the act of the CULPABLE accused should have been the only cause of the death. NEGLECT OF DETY If it result from the combined faults of several persons, Joint fault. each of them is responsible (1). Where A loitered Driver loitering behind his cart, and B drove furiously past, making startling his A's horse run off, and a person was killed by A's cart, both were indicted together (2). If a driver give the Driver giving reins to an unskilled person, both may be guilty if skilled person. anyone is run over (3). And in the case of the Druggist em
ploying ignorant druggist above noticed (4), the employer of the assistant. ignorant person, and that person himself, were both held responsible for death resulting from the mistake.
The death must result directly—partially it may Death must rebe, but still directly from the fault. There must be from fault. some connection between the accused as cause, and Accused must the occurrence as effect. Where an accident happened by a train going off the rails, but the driver was not to blame for this, it was attempted to charge him with culpable homicide because a person whom he had improperly allowed to ride on the engine, was killed. Here the accused was not the cause of the occurrence. He was blameable in taking the deceased on the engine, but that did not contribute to cause the train to go off the rails. The charge was abandoned, but it is understood to have been the opinion of the court that it was irrelevant (5). The converse of this holds Accused not exalso. If an accident be caused by fault, and death decensed had no result, it will not necessarily exonerate the accused where he was. that the person killed had no right to be where he
Where a person who was improperly riding on a train was killed by fault of an engineman, it was held to be culpable homicide (6).
right to be
1 John Drysdale and others, Lawson, H.C., June 13th 1842; 1 H.C., March 13th 1848 ; Ark. 440 Broun 360 and Bell's Notes 71. (Lord Justice Clerk Hope's charge). 6 Will. Gray, H.C., Nov. 21st
2 John Ross and others, Inver- 1836; 1 Swin, 328 and Bell's Notes ness, April 14th 1847 ; Ark. 258. 72.-See also John M‘Nicol, May
3 Arch. Gowans, Glasgow, Jan. 18th 1835; Bell's Notes 71. 1831 ; Bell's Notes 70.
6 Will. Laird, Perth, Sept. 17th 4 Rob. Henderson and Will. 1833 ; 6 S.J. 42.