La mise en danger d'autrui

by Jo-Anne Lefebvre

La consécration du concept de « mise en danger » par les rédacteurs du Code pénal français de 1992 se voulait rigoureuse mais demeure marquée par les ambiguïtés les plus diverses. Et d'abord, en dépit de l'acception strictement objective de la notion, le législateur en a inauguré l'emploi, dans la partie générale du Code, sous une formulation purement subjective dite de « mise en danger délibérée de la personne d'autrui ». Ensuite, la partie spéciale du Code regroupant les infractions de « mise en danger de la personne » peut, certes, se prévaloir de l'introduction en droit français d'une infraction générale d'exposition d'autrui à un risque grave (article 223-1) mais se présente surtout comme un agrégat de textes hétérogènes. Loin de ramasser, sous la charpente de ce seul chapitre, l'ensemble des applications du concept, le législateur en a autorisé la dispersion dans tout le Code pénal. L'articulation même entre la déclinaison subjective du concept et ses applications les plus officielles demeure équivoque. Finalement, la notion de mise en danger d'autrui apparaît comme une nébuleuse, infiniment plus complexe que ne le laissait penser le moule de sa consécration légale. Pourtant, en distinguant ce qui relève du sens de la notion et ce qui participe, comme la référence à autrui, des modalités de son exploitation pénale, en valorisant sa richesse conceptuelle et fonctionnelle, sous doute est-il possible de révéler l'acception plus fédératrice que sa nature complexe permet, mais que les formes de sa consécration positive occultent, pour présenter la théorie de la mise en danger sous un angle plus flatteur, celui d'un véritable principe fondateur de responsabilité pénale.


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