Murder, Incorporated on Gotham

Let’s start with Alfred is awesome. The ultimate butler who can fight off three assassins and put one in the ground. The world needs more marksmen butlers.

Alfred-VenusianAikidoThe Gotham mid-season finale focused on three assassins hired to kill Selnia Kyle (AKA Cat) at Wayne Manor. This small “league of assassins” killed a groundskeeper at Wayne Manor, shot Alfred (just a flesh wound), murdered Dick Lovecraft, and had a gunfight with the police.

“Murder-for-hire” assassins would violate both Federal and New York. Federal law specifically states:

(a) Whoever travels in or causes another (including the intended victim) to travel in interstate or foreign commerce, or uses or causes another (including the intended victim) to use the mail or any facility of interstate or foreign commerce, with intent that a murder be committed in violation of the laws of any State or the United States as consideration for the receipt of, or as consideration for a promise or agreement to pay, anything of pecuniary value, or who conspires to do so, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for not more than ten years, or both; and if personal injury results, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for not more than twenty years, or both; and if death results, shall be punished by death or life imprisonment, or shall be fined not more than $ 250,000, or both.

(b) As used in this section and section 1959 [18 USCS § 1959]–

(1) “anything of pecuniary value” means anything of value in the form of money, a negotiable instrument, a commercial interest, or anything else the primary significance of which is economic advantage;

(2) “facility of interstate or foreign commerce” includes means of transportation and communication; and

(3) “State” includes a State of the United States, the District of Columbia, and any commonwealth, territory, or possession of the United States.

18 USCS § 1958.

The murder of Dick Lovercraft was a completed murder-for-fire and could be prosecuted under Federal and New York law.

New York law specifically prohibits conspiracy to commit murder under NY CLS Penal § 105.15. Murdering a witness to a crime with the intent to prevent the witness from testifying in a trial is first-degree murder. NY CLS Penal § 125.27(1)(a)v).

The three assassins could be prosecuted under both Federal and State law for their conspiracy to kill Selina Kyle (thus attempted murder), because there was 1) a contract to kill the minor; 2) the intent to kill Kyle was to prevent her from testifying in the Wayne murder; and 3) interstate commerce was used in someway to give Federal jurisdiction, whether it was by communication or travel.

The death of the groundskeeper would qualify as a “death” under both statutes, as the groundskeeper was murder in the furtherance of the conspiracy. His death would carry a life sentence for all of the conspirators. Alternatively, if somehow the groundskeeper’s death and body mutilation was only second degree murder viewed separate from the conspiracy, the fact an assassin shot Alfred in the arm would qualify as an injury, thus carry a 20-year sentence.

SuperHeroStuff - Shop Now!
SHARE
Previous articleThe Legal Geeks Made the ABA Journal Blawg 100!
Next articleBlack Friday: Avoid Tort Liability for Christmas
Josh Gilliland
Josh Gilliland is a California attorney who focuses his practice on eDiscovery. Josh is the co-creator of The Legal Geeks, which has made the ABA Journal Top Blawg 100 Blawg in 2013, 2014, and 2015, and was nominated for Best Podcast for the 2015 Geekie Awards. Josh has presented at legal conferences and comic book conventions across the United States. He also ties a mean bow tie.