Who should be criminally charged under Iowa law?Discuss

Week 9: Non-Traditional Defenses – CH 14

Watch the video titled A Case of Affluenza

Review the relevant textbook materials on Criminal Responsibility and Defenses.

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Research the Iowa State Code to identify relevant crimes profiled in the case of Ethan Couch.


Students will analyze the facts from the video to make a formal recommendation to an Iowa prosecutor.

The prosecution recommendation should be based on the relevant crimes found in the Iowa State Code as if the crime had occurred within Iowa jurisdiction.

Answer the following questions:

Who should be criminally charged under Iowa law?

List the criminal charges recommended (e.g. first degree murder, second degree murder, felony murder, manslaughter, vehicular manslaughter, accidental – no criminal violation, etc.).

For each criminal charge recommended, explain how the facts from the case support the elements of the crime.  Do this for each person (if applicable), and each crime (if applicable).

Include a summary of evidence for the prosecutor as to why “Affluenza” should not be allowed as a defense in this case.

*This assignment is worth 10 points
A Case of Affluenza  (38 mins)

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