Crime CLXVIII-Criminal Damage VIII
List of Cases for Criminal Damage
In R v Cunningham (1957), the appellant ripped a gas meter from a wall in an attempt to steal money that was deposited in a coin box attached to the meter and as a result gas seeped through fissures in the wall and escaped to the neighboring property where Mrs. Wade (Sarah) was sleeping.
“The appellant was convicted upon an indictment framed under s 23 of the Offences against the person Act (1861) which charged that he unlawfully and maliciously caused to be taken by Sarah Wade a certain noxious thing, namely, coal gas, so as thereby to endanger the life of the said Sarah Wade”.
In any statutory definition of a crime, malice must be taken not in the old vague sense of wickedness in general but as requiring either
(1) An actual intention to do the particular kind of harm that in fact was
(2) Recklessness as to whether such harm should occur or not. It is neither limited to nor does it indeed require any ill will towards the person injured.
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