Disclaimer: This work is intended for educational use only, it does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon to advise clients on legal matters.
If you would like to view other samples of the academic work produced by our writers, please click here.
Jaggard v Dickinson  1 QB 527
Criminal Damage – Intoxication – Mistake
The defendant had been told by a friend that they could stay at their house and “use it as their own”. Returning to the street drunk one evening the defendant attempted to gain access to an identical house on the street after mistaking it for her friend’s property. After being denied access by the actual owner, the defendant broke a window and gained access through this way. After being arrested the defendant indicated that she mistakenly believed it was her friend’s house and that her friend would have consented to her gaining entry by breaking a window. She was charged with Criminal Damage contrary to s1(1) Criminal Damage Act 1971 and convicted. The defendant appealed.
Was the defendant entitled to rely on the defence of mistake? Whether the defendant’s intoxicated mistake that the victim would have consented to her criminal damage was a defence. Whether voluntary intoxication is excuse to criminal damage.
The appeal was successful. The defendant was entitled to rely on mistake as a defence under s5(2)(a) Criminal Damage Act 1971 which provides that it is a lawful excuse for a person committing criminal damage that they believed the person who owned the property in question would have consented. This was even so considering the defendant’s state of intoxication. As such, this formed a special statutory exception to the general rule set down in DPP v Majewski  UKHL 2 which provides that voluntary intoxication was no excuse for crimes of basic intent. Whilst voluntary intoxication is not a defence to criminal damage, the statutory defence available under s5(2)(a) Criminal Damage Act applied regardless of the defendant’s state of voluntary intoxication.
Important Information for UK Law Students
The introduction of the upcoming SQE (Solicitors Qualifying Examination) will almost certainly impact on anyone entering the profession in the next few years and may even shake up the current academic landscape for entry into the profession.
Keep up-to-date on the SQE with our legal blog series here .
Related ServicesView all
DMCA / Removal Request
If you are the original writer of this essay and no longer wish to have the essay published on the UK Essays website then please: