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homicide

The act of killing a human being. Unlawful homicide, which constitutes the crime of *murder, *manslaughter, or *infanticide, can only be committed if the victim is an independent human being (see *abortion), the act itself causes the death (see *causation), and the victim dies within a year after the act alleged to have caused the death. A British citizen may be tried for homicide committed anywhere in the world. Lawful homicide occurs when somebody uses reasonable force in preventing crime or arresting an offender, in self-defence or defence of others, or (possibly) in defence of his property, and causes death as a result. See also *excusable homicide.

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