Decision of the Court of Cassation, I Criminal Section, No. 12328 of 2 March 2017

In this decision, the Court of Cassation (I Criminal Section), ruled that the aggravating circumstance that consists in committing a crime in the presence of children of less than 18 years applies, merely, for the fact that the author of the crime was aware or should had be aware of the presence of a minor. This is the right interpretation of the words ‘in the presence’, which not necessarily means that the author of the crime could see the minor. This aggravating circumstance was introduced into the Italian criminal code (Article 61.11 quinquies), through law No. 93 of 2013, containing urgent measures against gender violence and domestic violence. The Court reputed that the above interpretation justified the application of the aggravating circumstance in the case at hand, concerning the killing of a women by her partner, occurred while one of her children was in another room of the apartment, and the other in a contiguous garden.

  • Original language: Italiano