A necessity may be claimed as a defense when a defendant reasonably believed that his or her criminal act was immediately necessary to avoid imminent harm. The reasonableness of the defendant's act and the harm that was sought to be avoided by the defendant are the essential elements of the defense. The defendant must show that the harm that he or she sought to avoid was greater than the harm that was committed by his or her criminal act. In other words, the defendant must show that he or she was attempting to achieve a "greater good."
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