Attempt to Commit a Crime California
In People v. Toledo (2001) 26 Cal. 4th 221, 229-230 109 Cal. Rptr. 2d 315, 26 P.3d 1051, Chief Justice Ronald M. George summarized California law concerning the law of attempt to commit a crime as follows, in part: "Under California law, 'an attempt to commit a crime is itself a crime and is subject to punishment that bears some relation to the completed offense.' (1 Witkin & Epstein, Cal. Criminal Law (3d ed. 2000) Elements, 53, p. 262 . . . .)
Furthermore, as provided by section 21a, 'an attempt to commit a crime consists of two elements: a specific intent to commit the crime, and a direct but ineffectual act done toward its commission.'
As past decisions explain:
'One of the purposes of the criminal law is to protect society from those who intend to injure it. When it is established that the defendant intended to commit a specific crime and that in carrying out this intention he committed an act that caused harm or sufficient danger of harm, it is immaterial that for some collateral reason he could not complete the intended crime.' ( People v. Camodeca (1959) 52 Cal. 2d 142, 147 338 P.2d 903.)
When a defendant acts with the requisite specific intent, that is, with the intent to engage in the conduct and/or bring about the consequences proscribed by the attempted crime (2 LaFave & Scott, Substantive Criminal Law (1986) 6.2(c)(1), p. 24), and performs an act that 'goes beyond mere preparation . . . and . . . shows that the perpetrator is putting his or her plan into action' ( People v. Kipp (1998) 18 Cal. 4th 349, 376 75 Cal. Rptr. 2d 716, 956 P.2d 1169), the defendant may be convicted of criminal attempt."