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Criminal Law Keyed to Ohlin
Bailey v. Commonwealth
Citation:229 Va. 258, 329 S.E.2d 37 (1985)
The defendant and Gordon Murdock were both intoxicated and arguing over their radios. Murdock was legally blind and the defendant knew that he had a problem with his vision and that he was intoxicated. He also knew that Murdock owned a handgun and boasted about how he would use it to scare people off. Further, he knew that he became especially angry if anyone disparaged his war hero, General Patton.
The defendant implied that General Patton and Murdock himself were homosexuals. Then, the defendant demanded that Murdock arm himself with his handgun and wait for him to show up. Murdock responded by saying that he would be waiting on his front porch, and told the defendant to kiss his family goodbye because he would never return home.
The defendant then made two anonymous phone calls to the police department. A police car was dispatched to the address, but the officers reported they did not “see anything.” The defendant called Murdock back on the radio and chided him for not “going out on the porch.” More epithets and threats were exchanged. The defendant told Murdock he was “going to come up there in a blue and white car” and demanded that Murdock “step out there on the . . . porch” with his gun “in [his] hands” because he would “be there in just a minute.”
An officer approached Murdock from the side of the porch and told him to “[l]eave the gun alone and walk down the stairs away from it.” Murdock cursed him and reached for the gun and opened fire. The officers returned fire, and Murdock was killed.
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