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suitable person possessing the qualifications of an elector, residing within such county, to fill the vacancy, and the person thus appointed shall give bond and take the like oath as is required of assessors chosen by the people, and shall hold his office until the next annual election and until his successor is chosen and qualified.


SEC. 4. Said assessor shall have the power of appointing one or May appoint more deputies to aid in his official duties, for whose conduct he shall be responsible.

neglect of duty.

SEC. 5. If any assessor shall, by himself or deputy, be guilty of any Penalty for neglect of duty enjoined on him by law, the court of sessions may make such deduction from his account for services rendered, as they may deem just and reasonable, and shall, moreover, be liable to indictment in any court of competent jurisdiction, and fined in any sum not exceeding five hundred dollars.

weekly an

occupied in

which is to be

presented to

SEC. 6. Each county assessor and deputy assessor shall, at the end To make out of each week in which he shall have been engaged in the performance account of time of any of the duties required of him by law, enter an account in wri- official duties, ting of the number of days or parts of days he may have been so verified and engaged during the week, and at the next regular term of the court of court of sessions. sessions, after the return of his assessment roll, shall present such statement to said court, and shall make oath to the truth thereof, and shall answer such questions respecting the same as may be propounded to him by said court. (1)

supervisors or

court of


SEC. 7. The assessor and deputy assessor shall each be allowed Compensation to be regulated such sum per day, not exceeding sixteen nor less than eight dollars, by the board of as said court of sessions or board of supervisors in those counties where such board has superseded the court of sessions, may see fit to allow for each day the said court or board shall be satisfied they shall have been respectively employed in the discharge of the duties required of them by law. (2)


SEC. 8. Suit may be instituted on such assessor's bond, in the man- Suit on assessor's ner designated by law, for the benefit of any person who may be aggrieved by the wrongful conduct of such assessor or his deputy.

deputies may

SEC. 9. The assessor and his deputy are hereby authorized to ad- Assessor and minister all oaths and affirmations contemplated by law in the discharge administer oaths of their duties as such assessors.

(1) For duties under Revenue Act, see post, chap. 127.
(2) Amendment inserted from stat. 1853, p. 138.


Essence of a crime.

Intent, how manifested.

Who considered of sound mind.

Infant under fourteen.


Counselling infant or idiot

to commit any offence.

Married woman acting under coercion of husband.

Drunkenness not

except, etc.


AN ACT concerning Crimes and Punishments. [Passed April 16, 1850.]

The People of the State of California, represented in Senate and
Assembly, do enact as follows:



SECTION 1. In every crime or public offence there must be an union or joint operation of act and intention, or criminal negligence.

SEC. 2. Intention is manifested by the circumstances connected with the perpetration of the offence, and the sound mind and discre tion of the person accused.

SEC. 3. A person shall be considered of sound mind who is neither an idiot, nor lunatic, nor affected with insanity, and who hath arrived at the age of fourteen years or before that age, if such person knew the distinction between good and evil.

SEC. 4. An infant under the age of fourteen years shall not be found guilty of any crime.

SEC. 5. An idiot shall not be found guilty or punished for any crime with which he or she may be charged.

SEC. 6. Any person counselling, advising, or encouraging an infant under the age of fourteen years, a lunatic or idiot, to commit any offence, shall be prosecuted for such offence, when committed, as principal, and if found guilty shall suffer the same punishment that would have been inflicted on such person counselling, advising, or encouraging, as aforesaid, had he or she committed the offence directly, without the intervention of such idiot, lunatic, or infant.

SEC. 7. A married woman, acting under the threats, command, or coercion of her husband, shall not be found guilty of any crime not punishable with death: Provided, it appear from all the facts and circumstances of the case that violent threats, command, or coercion, were used; and in such case the husband shall be prosecuted as principal, and receive the punishment which would have otherwise been inflicted on the wife if she had been found guilty.

SEC. 8. Drunkenness shall not be an excuse for any crime, unless to excuse crime, such drunkenness be occasioned by the fraud, contrivance, or force of some other person or persons, for the purpose of causing the perpetration of an offence, in which case the person or persons so causing

said drunkenness for such malignant purpose shall be considered principal or principals, and suffer the same punishment as would have been inflicted on the person or persons committing the offence, if he, she, or they had been possessed of sound reason and discretion.

misfortune or

SEC. 9. All acts committed by misfortune or accident shall not be Act done by deemed criminal when it satisfactorily appears that there was no evil accident. design or intention or culpable negligence.

ted under duress.

SEC. 10. A person committing a crime not punishable with death, Crimes commitunder threats or menaces which sufficiently show that his or her life was in danger, or that he or she had reasonable cause to believe and did believe that his or her life was in danger, shall not be found guilty, and such threats or menaces being proved and established, the person or persons compelling by such threats or menaces the commission of the offence, shall be considered as principal or principals, and suffer the same punishment as if he or she had perpetrated the offence.




SECTION 11. An accessory is he or she who stands by and aids, abets, Accessory or assists; or who, not being present aiding, abetting, or assisting, hath advised and encouraged the perpetration of the crime. He or she who thus aids, abets or assists, advises or encourages, shall be deemed and considered as principal, and punished accordingly.

fact defined.

SEC. 12. An accessory after the fact is a person who, after full Accessory after knowledge that a crime has been committed, conceals it from the magistrate, or harbors and protects the person charged with or found guilty of the crime. Any person being found guilty of being an accessory after the fact shall be imprisoned for any term not exceeding Punishment. two years, and fined in a sum not exceeding five thousand dollars, to be regulated by the circumstances of the case and the enormity of the crime.



SECTION 13. The party or parties injured shall in all cases be compe- Party injured tent witnesses; the credibility of all such witnesses shall be left to may be witness. the jury as in other cases.

toes, and indians,


SEC. 14. No black or mulatto person, or indian, shall be permitted Blacks, mulatto give evidence in favor of, or against, any white person. Every when not to be person who shall have one-eighth part or more of negro blood shall Mulatto and be deemed a mulatto, and every person who shall have one half of indian defined.

indian blood shall be deemed an indian.


Crimes against government, etc.

Treason against state.

Misprision of


SEC. 15. The solemn affirmation of witnesses shall be deemed sufficient. A false and corrupt affirmation shall subject the witness to all the penalties and punishments provided for those who commit wilful and corrupt perjury.



SECTION 16. Crimes against the government and people shall consist of treason and misprision of treason, and can be committed only by persons owing allegiance to the state.

SEC. 17. Treason against the state shall consist only in levying war against it, adhering to its enemies, or giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the evidence of two witnesses to the same overt act, or confession in open court. The punishment of treason shall be death. When the overt act of treason shall be committed without the limits of this state, the person charged therewith may be arrested, tried, and punished in any county of this state within the limits of which he may be found, and the offence may be charged to have been committed in the county where he may be arrested.

SEC. 18. Misprision of treason shall consist in the knowledge and concealment of treason, without otherwise assenting to, or participating in the crime. Any person being found guilty thereof shall be punished by confinement in the state prison for any term not exceeding five years.

Murder defined.

Express malice defined.

Malice, when to be implied.

Manslaughter defined.



SECTION 19. Murder is the unlawful killing of a human being, with malice aforethought, either express or implied. The unlawful killing may be effected by any of the various means by which death may be occasioned.

SEC. 20. Express malice is that deliberate intention unlawfully to take away the life of a fellow creature, which is manifested by external circumstances capable of proof.

SEC. 21. Malice shall be implied when no considerable provocation appears, or when all the circumstances of the killing show an abandoned and malignant heart. The punishment of any person convicted of the crime of murder shall be death.'

SEC. 22. Manslaughter is the unlawful killing of a human being

without malice expressed or implied, and without any mixture of deliberation. It must be voluntary, upon a sudden heat of passion, caused by a provocation apparently sufficient to make the passion irresistible; or involuntary in the commission of an unlawful act, or a lawful act without due caution or circumspection.


SEC. 23. In cases of voluntary manslaughter there must be a seri- Voluntary ous and highly provoking injury inflicted upon the person killing, sufficient to excite an irresistible passion in a reasonable person, or an attempt by the person killed to commit a serious personal injury on the person killing.

when to be


SEC. 24. The killing must be the result of that sudden violent im- Manslaughter, pulse of passion supposed to be irresistible; for if there should appear punished as to have been an interval between the assault or provocation given and the killing, sufficient for the voice of reason and humanity to be heard, the killing shall be attributed to deliberate revenge and punished as murder.

SEC. 25. Involuntary manslaughter shall consist in the killing of a Involuntary manslaughter human being, without any intent so to do; in the commission of an defined. unlawful act, or a lawful act, which probably might produce such a consequence in an unlawful manner: Provided, that where such invol- Involuntary untary killing shall happen in the commission of an unlawful act, committing an which in its consequences naturally tends to destroy the life of a human being, or is committed in the prosecution of a felonious intent, the offence shall be deemed and adjudged to be murder.

killing in

unlawful act.


SEC. 26. Every person convicted of the crime of manslaughter shall Punishment for be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for a term not exceeding three years, and fined not exceeding five thousand dollars. SEC. 27. In order to make the killing either murder or manslaugh- Death of party ter, it is requisite that the party die within a year and a day after the stroke received, or the cause of death administered; in the com- Computation putation of which the whole of the day on which the act was shall be reckoned the first.


injured after a year and a day.

of time.

SEC. 28. If the injury be inflicted in one county and the party die Place of trial. within another county or without the state, the accused shall be tried in the county where the act was done, or the cause of death administered. If the party killing shall be in one county, and the party killed be in another county at the time the cause of death shall be administered, the accused may be tried in either county.

cide defined.

SEC. 29. Justifiable homicide is the killing of a human being in Justifiable hominecessary self-defence, or in defence of habitation, property, or person, against one who manifestly intends or endeavors, by violence or surprise, to commit a felony, or against any person or persons who

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