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A state in which a person's normal capacity to act or reason is inhibited by alcohol or drugs.

Generally, an intoxicated person is incapable of acting as an ordinary prudent and cautious person would act under similar conditions. In recognition of this factor, the law may allow intoxication to be used as a defense to certain crimes. In many jurisdictions, intoxication is a defense to specific-intent crimes. The underlying rationale is that the intoxicated individual cannot possess the requisite mental state necessary to establish the offense.

Other jurisdictions recognize it as a defense to general-intent crimes as well. For example, although rape is commonly considered a general-intent crime, there are states in which extreme intoxication may be alleged as a defense. It is unlikely, however, that the defense will be successful in such cases absent proof that the defendant was so intoxicated that he or she could not form the intent to have intercourse.

In Homicide cases, intoxication is relevant to negate premeditation and deliberation necessary for first-degree murder. When the defense is successfully interposed, it will reduce a charge of first-degree murder to second-degree murder.

When a person is forced to consume an intoxicant against his or her will, the person is involuntarily intoxicated. In most jurisdictions, the defense of involuntary intoxication is treated similarly to the Insanity Defense. For example, an intoxicated person who cannot distinguish right from wrong at the time of committing the wrongful act would have a valid defense.


n. 1) the condition of being drunk as the result of drinking alcoholic beverages and/or use of narcotics. In the eyes of the law this definition may differ depending on the situation to which it is applied. 2) In drunk driving (DUI, DWI) the standard of intoxication varies by state between .08 and .10 alcohol in the bloodstream, or a combination of alcohol and narcotics which would produce the same effect even though the amount of alcohol is below the minimum. 3) In public drunkenness the standard is subjective, meaning the person must be unable to care for himself, be dangerous to himself or others, be causing a disturbance, or refuse to leave or move along when requested. 4) Intoxication as a defense in a criminal case in which the claim is made by the defendant that he/she was too intoxicated to form an intent to commit the crime or to know what he/she was doing, the amount of intoxication is subjective but higher than for drunk driving. There is also the question if the intoxication was an intentional aforethought to the crime ("I wanted to get drunk so I had the nerve to kill her.") Thus, unintentional intoxication can show lack of capacity to form an intent and thus reduce the possible level of conviction and punishment, as from voluntary (intentional) manslaughter down to involuntary (unintentional but through a wrongful act) manslaughter. However, in vehicular manslaughter, the intoxication is an element in the crime, whether getting drunk was intentional or not, since criminal intent was not a factor. (See: vehicular manslaughter)

See: dipsomania, inebriation, passion
References in periodicals archive ?
Il faut constamment avoir present a l'esprit que les intoxications alimentaires sont des affections courantes, certaines sont sans gravite, mais d'autres peuvent s'averer dangereuses et parfois mortelles.
Il faut donc se mefier des signes qui apparaissent tardivement lors des intoxications.
The sections are organized to include bacterial pathogens, viral pathogens, parasites (along with mycobacteria and prions), and agents involved with food intoxications.
Intoxications with calcium channel blockers may be lethal, if not diagnosed and treated in time.
The symptoms in these three mucocutaneous-acquired cases, and summary of symptoms from 16 laboratory-acquired inhalational intoxications with SEB, may help define the clinical spectrum that might be expected after SEB exposures.
Contacte par telephone, un responsable de la Societe d'assainissement d'Alger (Sal) affirmera que[beaucoup moins que]ce n'est pas l'eau du robinet qui est la cause de cette intoxication.
La periode estivale est propice a la proliferation de commerces alimentaires peu enclins a l'hygiene; ce qui facilite la propagation des microbes responsables des intoxications alimentaires qui sont enregistrees particulierement durant l'ete.
Le centre anti poison et de pharmacovigilance du Maroc vient d'editer un numero special sur les intoxications medicamenteuses.
Eecrit par Ouardirhi Abdelaziz Intoxications alimentaires La salubrite des aliments qui sont exposes a la vente a l'air libre sur des charrettes (fruits - legumes - poissons - poulet.
Dans un communique publie a l'issue du deces d'un nourrisson, victime de la piqure d'un scorpion a Dar Chafii, des associations de la societe civile dans la region de Beni Meskine occidentale ont egalement revele que les intoxications alimentaires collectives causent la mort de quelque 6000 Marocains par an.
Les risques pour la sante sont reels, surtout les intoxications alimentaires qui constituent, en cette periode, un probleme de sante recurrent.
Le numero 12 du premier trimestre 2012 de [beaucoup moins que]Toxicologie Maroc[beaucoup plus grand que], qui est une publication officielle du centre anti- poison Maroc dependant du ministere de la sante, traite d'un sujet tres important [beaucoup moins que]les intoxications chez l'enfant[beaucoup plus grand que] mais aussi des aspects epidemiologiques des intoxications aigues chez l'enfant , une etude retrospective descriptive menee sur une periode de pres de 30 ans , de 1980 a 2009.