A mental state provoked by fear, rage, anger or terror that, combined with adequate provocation, is an element of certain crimes like voluntary manslaughter. Provocation, in order to be adequate, must be such as might naturally cause a reasonable person in the passion of the moment to lose self-control and act on impulse and without reflection. The effect is to to act as an extenuating circumstance that can reduce the severity of the crime charged almost like a defense.
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