Fatty Arbuckle complicit in involuntary manslaughter? No!

In the interests of fighting ignorance…

From this thread.

I don’t know the law in California.

But where I sit, there’s no involuntary manslaughter.

In my state, involuntary manslaughter is the accidental killing of a person, contrary to the intention of the actor, during an unlawful, but not felonious, act, or during the improper performance of some lawful act.

The mere failure to call a doctor for an ailing person is not a criminal act.

Unless there’s an element to the story I don’t know, Mr. Arbuckle had no responsibility for any injury to Ms. Rappe, and is not guilty of a crime.

The discussion of the Arbuckle/Rappe tragedy was a hijack of the linked thread, and the discussion has moved on, so I thought I’d start a new one rather than trying to revive it there. This is not a matter of dire importance, but I’d like the record to be straight on what is, and isn’t, involuntary manslaughter.

  • Rick

my bloated love knuckle
like Fatty Arbuckle

According to this article, there was the suggestion that he might have accidentally kneed her after she tickled him, possibly contributing to her ruptured bladder:

From where I sit, though, that still sounds like an accident, rather than involuntary manslaughter - or am I misinterpreting?

Of course, I don’t know anything about the veracity of the source quoted.

I’ve been looking for an appropriate place to say this for a while now, and I hope that Bricker doesn’t mind an effusive hijack.

I’d just like to say that I think the legal (and other professional) Dopers are one of the real strengths of this online community, and one of the real reasons to stick around here. To see Bricker take time to correct a legal point (and common misperception) like this is, I think, wonderful. Especially when there are posters who just spew whatever their personal preference is as legal (or even medical or engineering, etc.) fact. This community is lucky to have them.

I’m not going to specify any (more) posters because I know I’d miss some important ones. I think most Dopers appreciate the input of these actual practicing professionals, as opposed to the “virtual” lawyers.

So, to Bricker and all the rest, Thanks.


Nice sentiment paperbackwriter. One which I happen to share. (Great user name too!)

Poor Fatty. Can you even imagine something like that happening today?

Bring back Will Hayes! :smiley: