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Defining Depraved

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Legal scholars spend lots of time debating the definition and applicability of the various culpable mental states.  There's even an intriguing new paper out that suggests the influential Model Penal Code formulations might be wrong. But sometimes what constitutes depravity is just so obvious:

In 1986, appellant Paulos, f/k/a Paul Lindberg, was convicted of second-degree murder for strangling a woman to death after a sexual encounter. State v. Lindberg, 408 N.W.2d 589, 591-92 (Minn.App.1987). After killing the woman, Paulos put a cigarette lighter in her rectum and her keys in her vagina. Id. at 591. He spray painted her body green, wrapped her body in a rug, placed her body in his car, drove to a parking lot, and dumped her body beneath two trailers parked in the lot.

Paulos v. Ludeman, 2011 WL 691863 (Minn.App., 2011) 

For reasons that are unclear in the opinion, Paulos didn't serve a long prison term for this heinous crime and the state had him civilly committed 1997.  Seeking release in 2009, Paulos claimed that he posed little risk to society.  The judicial appeal panel didn't agree and neither did the Court of Appeals of Minnesota.



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