Review the following case scenario, and identify all criminal acts. For each criminal act identified, discuss the elements and whether you believe the defendant or defendants can be convicted. You should use case law and any federal or state statutes to support your position.
Jane Doe was a janitor for the exclusive T-Partay Condominium complex. She only had a fourth-grade education and was considered “slow” because of a childhood illness. Her father was a friend of the owner of the complex and gave her the job. Most of the residents were quite wealthy. Jane had access to apartment keys and would often do wellness checks on the residents and make minor repairs. She did not carry a weapon for self-defense, but she did own a firearm, which she kept in her apartment. She resented the fact that her employer had so much money and only paid her minimum wage. She was 40 years old and could barely pay her rent. Therefore, she was receptive when Jack Brown told her that he would pay her $500 if he could obtain the key to Mrs. Wealthy’s apartment from Jane. Mrs. Wealthy was an affluent and socially prominent widow who resided at T-Partay. Jane gave Jack the key in exchange for the money. She believed Jack was going to use the key to simply take valuables from Mrs. Wealthy’s apartment. Instead, Jack, who was a part of a credit card scam ring, planned to pretend he was a good Samaritan by returning a lost key to Mrs. Wealthy that he found in the lobby. Jack thought that his ploy would give him access to Mrs. Wealthy’s apartment, where he planned to steal credit cards and bank statements.
Jack’s plan worked. He gave the key back to Mrs. Wealthy, who thanked him and invited him into her apartment for crumpets and cookies. When Mrs. Wealthy went to the restroom, Jack went through her purse and took a bank statement and no-limit credit card. Jack took the information back to his crew, and they started making phony checks and opened another credit line in Mrs. Wealthy’s name.
Jane found out about what Jack was up to when she learned that Mrs. Wealthy lost her entire life savings and was forced to move to a homeless shelter. Jane became addicted to pain pills and was deeply depressed. She sent Jack a letter and told him she would kill him if he did not send her more money. Jack refused and sent an associate to kill her. The associate, Jim, a convicted felon, broke into Jane’s home. Before he could pull out a gun, Jane shot him dead.
A few weeks later Mrs. Wealthy was wandering in the parking lot when she saw Jack. By this time, her money and her mind were gone. She thought Jack was the devil and shot him. Eventually, Jack was charged, among other things, with the attempted murder of Jane.