David Thaw

University of Pittsburgh | 3900 Forbes Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15260 | dbthaw@gmail.com

Criminal Law

This course Is an examination of the justification, potentialities and limitations of the criminal law as an instrument of social control. Major considerations are given to the substantive law of crimes and defenses to criminal liability, including such topics as the law of attempts, solicitation, and conspiracy, elements of crimes, and theories of punishment.

Students may be aware that scholars vary on the scope of crimes they cover in first-year criminal law. My preference is to provide students with as much breadth of exposure as can be balanced with a thorough treatment and discussion of the topics, and I accordingly cover a number of "traditional" crimes-against-persons and property crimes. Likewise, I generally touch both on traditional "common law" definitions of crimes as well as Model Penal Code definitions.

An example syllabus is available here.