In The Discourses, Niccold Machiavelli wrote, "The dangers involved in conspiracies ... are considerable, and go on all the time, for in a conspiracy dangers crop up alike in forming the plot, in carrying it out, and as a result of its having been carried out."' Although by its context this remark refers to conspiracies to commit regicide and the problems these conspiracies pose to the conspirators, this remark well describes practical and legal problems that can result from conspiracies to commit felonies. In Georgia this is particularly true following the June 28, 2010 ruling in State v. Jackson. Jackson involved a conspiracy, the failure of which caused one conspirator's death and exposed his fellow conspirators to liability for a crime greater than the conspiracy's intended aim. In what could lead to an explosion of criminal liability, the Georgia Supreme Court held that whenever one felon dies as a proximate result of the felony, the co-felons are liable for felony murder. Abolishing the decades-old rule from State v. Crane, the court extended defendants felony-murder liability to killings committed by their prospective victims.
Brupbacher, Brian E.
"State v. Jackson and the Explosion of Liability for Felony Murder,"
Mercer Law Review: Vol. 62
, Article 15.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.law.mercer.edu/jour_mlr/vol62/iss4/15