Section 13A-2-4

Construction of statutes with respect to culpability requirements.

(a) When a statute defining an offense prescribes as an element thereof a specified culpable mental state, such mental state is presumed to apply to every element of the offense unless the context thereof indicates to the contrary.

(b) Although no culpable mental state is expressly designated in a statute defining an offense, an appropriate culpable mental state may nevertheless be required for the commission of that offense, or with respect to some or all of the material elements thereof, if the proscribed conduct necessarily involves such culpable mental state. A statute defining a crime, unless clearly indicating a legislative intent to impose strict liability, states a crime of mental culpability.

(c) If a statute provides that criminal negligence suffices to establish an element of an offense, that element also is established if a person acts recklessly, knowingly or intentionally. If recklessness suffices to establish an element, that element also is established if a person acts knowingly and intentionally. If acting knowingly suffices to establish an element, that element also is established if a person acts intentionally.

(Acts 1977, No. 607, p. 812, §315.)