What started out as a small case study analyzing
and redesigning the FBIʼs current layout for missing
persons flyers has evolved into a full-blown website
that houses resources for families of missing persons to create their own graphics to share on social media and in print to effectively ask for the public for tips.
Furthermore, over the course of my year of research I found that the misinformation and unfounded rumors that plague these cases was damaging not only law enforcement‘s investigation but also to the loved ones of the missing. The need for in-depth long form write ups of the timeline, evidence and victims of suspicious deaths and missing persons cases that dispel misinformation and unfounded rumors became obvious to me and I hope that actus-reus.com can become a resource for this.
BEHIND THE NAME
Actus reus is a legal term which refers to the act or omission that comprise the physical elements of a crime while mens rea is person's intention to commit a crime, or knowledge that one's action or lack of action would cause a crime to be committed. In US criminal law, there must be both actus reus and mens rea for a defendant to be found guilty.
In missing persons and suspicious death cases we are not yet privy to the mens rea of the offender. But we can study the actus reus of each case. Some might even argue that the careful examination of the actus reus reveals the mens rea because there are behaviourally significant elements to each crime.