750.157b Solicitation to commit murder

Solicitation of murder is a felony offense in Michigan that will leave the accused facing extremely harsh penalties if convicted. The term "solicitation," according to Wikipedia, is defined as the name of a crime in the U.S., an inchoate offense that consists of a person offering money or inducing another to commit a crime with the specific intent that the person solicited commits the crime. For the purposes of this page, to solicit means to offer, promise to give, or give money, services, or anything of value to another individual as payment for that person committing murder or another felony criminal offense, such as solicitation of prostitution or other sex crimes.

Kinds of Solicitation Punishable Under Michigan Penal Code

Solicitation by itself is a crime; the punishment an individual will face depends largely on the criminal offense he or she solicited someone to commit. Examples of solicitation considered a felony include:

750.157b(2) Solicitation of Murder
750.145a Soliciting a Child to Commit an Immoral Act
750.157c Solicitation of a Minor to Commit a Felony
750.543k Solicitation of Providing Material Support for Terrorism

Certain elements must be proven by prosecutors in order for an individual to be found guilty of solicitation. The prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that:

  1. The defendant gave, promised, or offered, through words or actions, services, money, or an item or property of value to another person, or promised or forgave an obligation or debt owed to the defendant.
  2. The defendant intended a specific crime to occur as a result of his or her words or actions

The prosecutor is only required to prove solicitation; he or she is not required to prove the individual who was solicited actually committed the crime, or even intended or attempted to commit the crime.

Punishment for Solicitation to Commit Murder

The criminal penalties for solicitation to commit murder or felony depend on the offense the defendant solicited.

If the criminal penalties for the felony crime include a minimum of 5 years or up to life in prison, the defendant will face criminal penalties which include a maximum of 5 years in prison, $5,000 in fines, or both.

If the criminal penalties for the felony crime include prison time of less than 5 years, the defendant is guilty of a misdemeanor and will face criminal penalties which include a maximum of 2 years in prison, a $1,000 fine, or both. However, if the solicited offense is committed, the prison term will not exceed 1/2 the maximum imprisonment allowed for that criminal offense.

Other consequences of a conviction for solicitation to commit murder or felony include a permanent criminal record. Depending on the offense, an individual may also be required to register as a sex offender. For example, if the defendant is found guilty of solicitation of a child to commit an immoral act, he or she may be placed on the Michigan Public Sex Offender Registry.

Crimes Related to Solicitation of Murder

There are several crimes related to Solicitation to Commit Murder or Felony, including:

  • Soliciting a Child to Commit an Immoral Act
  • Solicitation of a Minor to Commit a Felony
  • Solicitation of Providing Material Support for Terrorism

History of Success Defending Solicitation of Murder in Michigan

Grabel & Associates has extensive experience defending clients charged with all types of felony solicitation offenses, including Solicitation to Commit Murder or Felony. Our firm has achieved great success in defending clients against charges of solicitation, obtaining dismissal of charges and in many cases securing acquittals.

There are a variety of effective defense strategies that are effective in defending clients charged with felony solicitation offenses. Prosecutors must prove specific elements of every crime in order for a defendant to be found guilty. Depending on the offense, defense strategies often include wrongly accused, mistaken identity, insufficient evidence, and more. Defendants who are found guilty of a solicitation offense may wish to pursue an appeal of the conviction or sentence, or seek post-conviction relief.

THE MICHIGAN PENAL CODE (EXCERPT)
Act 328 of 1931

750.157b Solicitation to commit murder or felony; penalty; affirmative defense.

Sec. 157b.

(1) For purposes of this section, “solicit” means to offer to give, promise to give, or give any money, services, or anything of value, or to forgive or promise to forgive a debt or obligation.

(2) A person who solicits another person to commit murder, or who solicits another person to do or omit to do an act which if completed would constitute murder, is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for life or any term of years.

(3) Except as provided in subsection (2), a person who solicits another person to commit a felony, or who solicits another person to do or omit to do an act which if completed would constitute a felony, is punishable as follows:

(a) If the offense solicited is a felony punishable by imprisonment for life, or for 5 years or more, the person is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years or by a fine not to exceed $5,000.00, or both.

(b) If the offense solicited is a felony punishable by imprisonment for a term less than 5 years or by a fine, the person is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for not more than 2 years or by a fine not to exceed $1,000.00, or both, except that a term of imprisonment shall not exceed 1/2 of the maximum imprisonment which can be imposed if the offense solicited is committed.

(4) It is an affirmative defense to a prosecution under this section that, under circumstances manifesting a voluntary and complete renunciation of his or her criminal purpose, the actor notified the person solicited of his or her renunciation and either gave timely warning and cooperation to appropriate law enforcement authorities or otherwise made a substantial effort to prevent the performance of the criminal conduct commanded or solicited, provided that conduct does not occur. The defendant shall establish by a preponderance of the evidence the affirmative defense under this subsection.

History: Add. 1968, Act 308, Eff. July 1, 1968 ;-- Am. 1986, Act 124, Eff. July 1, 1986

Constitutionality: Successive prosecutions for obstruction of justice under federal law, and inducing murder under MCL 750.157b, arising out of the same criminal act do not violate the guarantee against double jeopardy in the Michigan Constitution. People v Formicola, 407 Mich 293; 284 NW2d 334 (1979).