The Case of Weak Will and Wayward Desire.
Criminal Law and Philosophy (2008) (forthcoming)
In this article, I confront Garvey¡¯s argument that a weak-willed individual deserves partial excuse for trying to resist a strong desire that pushes him toward commission of a criminal act even though in the end he unreasonably abandons his resistance and commits the crime.
I attempt to refute Garvey¡¯s argument on two counts: one, I question whether the law should indeed provide mitigation to such an offender; and two, I argue that, even if it should, this mitigation may not come in the form of a partial defense. Defenses, even partial, are desert based, and there is nothing in Garvey¡¯s offender¡¯s circumstances that makes him less blameworthy for the crime he committed. A court may choose to treat such an offender more leniently but it should not be mandated to do so.
Vera Bergelson. 2008. "The Case of Weak Will and Wayward Desire." Rutgers University (Newark) Legal Working Paper Series
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/vera_bergelson/7