Is It Necessary to Name the Victim In An Indictment for Burglary ?
Should the Injured Person Be Identified In An Accusation With Committing a Crime Against a Person ?
In Irwin v. State, 117 Ga. 722 (2) (45 S.E. 59) (1903) the Supreme Court held that "for the protection of the accused it is necessary that, in an indictment for an offense against the person of another, the person injured should be referred to by his correct name, if it be known, or by some name by which he is commonly and generally called."
Applying this rule, we have held that "as a general rule, if an accusation charges the defendant with committing a crime against a person, the injured person should be identified in the accusation." State v. Kenney, 233 Ga. App. 298, 299 (1) (a) (503 S.E.2d 585) (1998).
If, however, the gist of the crime is not an offense against another person, it is not necessary to name the victim.
Thus, for example, in a prosecution for soliciting a prostitute, we have held that it is not necessary to name the person solicited, since "the gist of the offense is the harm done society by such unlawful solicitation." Day v. State, 70 Ga. App. 819, 820 (29 S.E.2d 659) (1944).
Similarly, it is not necessary to name the victim in an indictment for burglary, since that is a crime against property.