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R v Humphreys [1995] 4 All ER 1008 Court of Appeal

The appellant was convicted of murder at the age of 17. She had been brought up by an alcoholic mother and step-father. She left home at the age of sixteen and turned to prostitution. She went to live with an older man who was violent towards her and lived off her earnings. She would often self-harm by cutting her wrists. On the night in question her partner made public jokes about the possibility of a 'gang bang' later. When they returned home the appellant again cut her wrists. Her partner sat beside her and indicated that he wanted to have intercourse with her. When she refused he taunted her about her inability to commit suicide properly. She stabbed him to death.


The Court of Appeal quashed her murder conviction holding that her characteristic of attention seeking was sufficiently permanent and could be taken into account in assessing the standard of control expected of the defendant.
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