Fletch

Topics: Criminal law, Crime, Crimes Pages: 9 (3451 words) Published: November 4, 2013
The movie "Fletch", staring Chevy Chase, is a movie about an investigating reporter for a Los Angeles newspaper, Erwin Fletcher "Fletch", loitering around a beach in attempt to pass as a beach junkie with the intention of getting to the bottom of the drug trade and attempting to figure out who is behind the whole thing. While "working" the beaches, Fletch runs into a businessman who asks him to murder him so his wife will inherit the life insurance policy. Fletch, being the investigative reporter senses something fishy and does what he does best, investigates the situation. Along the way, Fletch commits many illegal acts and crimes in attempt to get to the bottom of the situation. Although his intentions are good, Fletch gets into a lot of trouble. The movie begins with Fletch in the guise of a aimless druggie, hanging out on the beach. Fletch is working on a story for his newspaper about the illegal drug traffic on the beach. Unexpectedly, Fletch is approached by a well-dressed, clearly wealthy man: airline executive Alan Stanwyk. The man offers Fletch $1,000 just to go to his house and listen to a offer. He assures Fletch that his proposal is not of a sexual nature. After Fletch and Stanwyk drive to Stanwyk's mansion, they talk in Stanwyk's study. Stanwyk offers Fletch $50,000 in cash: ostensibly to kill him so Stanwyk can avoid a painful cancer death and so Stanwyk's wife Gail can collect insurance. Stanwyk tells Fletch that he will leave a gun in the desk drawer, and the money in the open safe. All Fletch needs to do is come by at the appointed time a few days hence, shoot Stanwyk dead, take the money, and use pre-arranged airline tickets to start a new life abroad. Fletch does not know it at the time, but Stanwyk, the film's primary villain, is actually planning to kill Fletch. Fletch realizes that he has stumbled upon a potentially great investigative news story. Why would a wealthy man who appears to be in excellent health hire a stranger to kill him? Fletch decides to check into Stanwyk, to find out if the man is telling him the truth. The rest of the film is comprised of Fletch's investigation.

At the very beginning of the movie Fletch, Alan Stanwyck approaches "Fletch" and asks him to join him in a meeting to offer him a proposition. After accepting $1,000 dollars cash just to listen to Stanwycks proposition, Fletch meets with him at Stanwycks house. Stanwyck explains to Fletch that he wants him to murder Stanwyck in his own house. Stanwyck details that he is dying from bone cancer and does not want to suffer through the pain any longer. He says he can not commit suicide because his life insurance policy would be null and void. Fletch accepts the proposition, agreeing to murder Stanwyck in exchange for $50,000 and a safe way out of the country.

There are a couple things I found in this scene that show Fletch committing multiple crimes. The most obvious crime committed was Criminal Conspiracy to commit murder. According to Section 5.03 of the Model Penal Code, one is guilty of criminal conspiracy if he/she agrees with another person that one or more of them will engage in conduct that constitutes such crime or an attempt or solicitation to commit such crime. In other words, criminal conspiracy is an agreement between two persons to commit an unlawful act or to use unlawful means to accomplish an act that is not unlawful. In this particular situation, by Fletch and Stanwyck making an agreement for Fletch to murder Stanwyck, they are agreeing to commit an unlawful act.

The only hanger on the books regarding criminal conspiracy in this situation is required intent. It is not known at this point of the movie weather Fletch has the actual intent to murder Stanwyck, at the same time at this point of the movie also believe Stanwyck has the intent to go through with such a crime. As we move on in the movie, we realize that charging both with criminal conspiracy might not be realistic simply because the...
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