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Can you believe it? UK citizens starting to speak out.

Discussion in 'Legal' started by g_gunter, Oct 25, 2004.

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  1. g_gunter

    g_gunter Member

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  2. LiquidTension

    LiquidTension Member

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    It's still sickening to see the responses of the people that have already been attacked. "Something that would emit an electric shock would do."

    Morons. Pray that we never let our government reach the same state.
     
  3. g_gunter

    g_gunter Member

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    Here's another one..

    Here is another one just hitting the press in the UK (Same paper).

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/mai...26.xml&sSheet=/news/2004/10/26/ixnewstop.html

    It sure would be nice if some of our newspapers would begin campaigns to push for the right of people to defend themselves.

    g_gunter
     
  4. agricola

    agricola Member

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    How is this "UK citizens starting to speak out"? The law has once again been shown to justify self defence, in direct contradiction to what Lott and Malcolm. and their imitators on this board, have been peddling ever since I joined TFL. Who can be found to denounce those people?

    FWIW the case does not "have echoes of Tony Martin" because the farmer in this case used the force in self defence, not to shoot someone in the back as they were running off.
     
  5. Old Fuff

    Old Fuff Member

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    agricola:

    Admitedly I am a bit fuzzy about the laws in the U.K.

    Exactly when, and under what circumstances can someone use a firearm for self defense?
     
  6. Cool Hand Luke 22:36

    Cool Hand Luke 22:36 member

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    It seems like what's being called for here is just an explicit definition in the law of a reasonableness standard for self-defense in the home, not some new right to defense. That right already exists.

    My take on the article is that those calling for the new laws want a explicit reasonableness standard for 'competence' in making a decision as to when to employ deadly force in a home defense scenario. They'd like to be able to shoot and not be held to the same standards as a Police Officer with years of professional training.
     
  7. agricola

    agricola Member

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    Old Fuff,

    If you mean "carry a firearm for self defence", then only in very limited circumstances. If you mean "use a firearm in self defence", then the law does not distinguish between any item used to defend oneself - even illegally held weapons can be used for self defence, though of course there is the matter of the possession of that item.

    Coolhand (he has me on ignore so I cannot reply to him) would have you believe:

    The law has never held any defined action as "reasonable" - certainly not from the standpoint of a police officer (though if the defendant was Pc and the issue was one of training, then it might). The law as it stands, for a defence of self defence to be made out, requires that all the defendants circumstances - age, strength, past history (in this case the break in), the time of the offence and anything else of relevance - and determines whether the force used was reasonable from the defendants standpoint, not from an abstract.

    This is a long winded process, but it is infinately better than what the Telegraph want and has - with one exception that was reversed on appeal ( R v Shannon, and that was due to a misdirection from the judge)- consistently done what is right and proper; ie that those who use force in self defence are not guilty, those who claim self defence when it has not in fact been used are convicted.

    When the Telegraph says:

    It is largely because of the Telegraph, and the rest of the media that trumpeted, and continue to trumpet, Tony Martin's failed defence as evidence the law needs changing. Martin shot a burglar in the back as he was running off. That is not self defence, by any definition.
     
  8. Standing Wolf

    Standing Wolf Member in memoriam

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    Perhaps not, but it was justice.
     
  9. Headless Thompson Gunner

    Headless Thompson Gunner Member

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    I might shoot somebody in the back too, under similar circumstances.

    How do I know he isn't just moving to a more advantageous position to attack me from? Maybe my family or neighbors are approaching, and he's moving to attack them. Nothing magical happens when soembody turns their back towards you that makes them suddenly cease to be a threat. And even if there were, he could always turn around again to face you.


    This is exactly right. I makes me feel good to know that people are starting to catch on.
     
  10. g_gunter

    g_gunter Member

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    Headless Thompson Gunner responds:

    Amen! That's what I'm talking about! That's my point!

    g_gunter
     
  11. agricola

    agricola Member

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    yawn

    If the Telegraph wants to allow people to kill burglars, then fine. They should not dress it up as "self defence" however.

    Headless, if "I might shoot somebody in the back too, under similar circumstances" is correct then you should have your guns taken away from you - Martin was a mentally ill individual (from evidence presented at his appeal) who had a long history of idiotic behaviour with guns - shooting at people he thought we stealing apples, shooting out a neighbours windows after a disagreement etc.

    Also is a more advantageous position "climbing out of the house"?
     
  12. atek3

    atek3 Member

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    agricola. How would the UK be any worse if Parliment passed a "castle" rule similar to what many US states have? "Castle rule" basically states that anyone entering your home with evil intent can be presumed to be a threat. If they don't comply with an order to leave, they can be stopped by any means necessary. For example, if a sound wakes you up in the middle of the night, so you grab your shotgun and head downstairs. You encounter a masked burgler with a wrench in his hand. You say, " Get out of my house," instead he moves towards you. If you shot him and he died. In england, shotgun vs. wrench probably wouldn't meet the "reasonable force" standard. You might get charged. In California, once the police had accertained that the shooting was indeed legitamate, the prosecutor wouldn't press charges.

    atek3
     
  13. agricola

    agricola Member

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    atek,

    thats the thing - shotgun vs wrench would be a legitimate use of force in that scenario. the following is from Textbook of Criminal Law via Tim Lambert's weblog:

    and in terms of proportionality itself

     
  14. agricola

    agricola Member

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    to continue...

    atek,

    The problem here is that the current law is perfectly suitable; it works well at determining whether or not the circumstances are as claimed by the person seeking to claim self-defence (R v Shannon aside, but that was cleared on appeal because of a misdirection). The law already works well in the manner you would intend "castle doctrine" to be applied.

    Its difficult to find a worse case than Tony Martin's to build a campaign on (which is what this is - a campaign by the media of exactly the same type as the post-Hungerford and post-Dunblane kind), for the reasons already cited. This thread, and the Telegraph article, are evidence of a strange phenomena where the legal system of England and Wales is derided for working as it is intended to do, in the face of all the media pressure over here, and the efforts of Lott, Malcolm et al over in the US.

    In short, bad cases make bad law.

    ps: the link for the above is off this blog
     
  15. G36-UK

    G36-UK Member

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    Thing is, things have gotten a little worse here. There was the dropping of charges against that guy who defended his home, but shotguns aren't available to everyone except FAC holders.

    Plus, there's almost no defensive weapons legally allowed in theis country now. Pepper Spray, Tazers, almost anything concealable is illegal. Just a few months ago, they banned the sale of collapsible batons.

    IIRC, over here "reasonable force" is something along the lines of equal damage, for example if they have a knofe, you can retaliate with your own knife, anything more is unreasonable.

    Wouldn't mind a castle rule myself.
     
  16. carebear

    carebear Member

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    So the law is functioning more or less as intended but the prosecutors, chiefs of police et al. are pushing the "call the police" "don't fight back" "let us handle it" line in the press (who's major outlets philosophically agree) and the elected officials keep passing laws to make that self-defense less effective (weapons controls) rather than both groups honoring the spirit of the Common Law on the issue and emphasizing the right of the people to defend themselves and enabling them the tools to do so?

    Sounds like DC, Detroit and Chicago. :rolleyes:
     
  17. atek3

    atek3 Member

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    agricola would disagree.
     
  18. agricola

    agricola Member

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    atek,

    Its not "agricola would disagree", he is wrong - if he wants to demonstrate how he is correct, then let him post up the links that prove it, as I have; but as the link already proves, he is wrong.
     
  19. Headless Thompson Gunner

    Headless Thompson Gunner Member

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    Thankfully I don't live in the UK, else your wish would already have come true.

    Here's the deal: I don't care if the guy is mentally ill. I don't care if he has a history of doing unusual things with guns. I don't care if he's shot at other people in the past. None of that matters.

    What matters is that someone was in his home uninvited, with ill intent. Under those circumstances, he has a right, if not an obligation, to defend himself and his family. No amount of personal character flaws can strip him of that right.

    The Telegraph is correct, any criminal who doesn't repsect the law doesn't deserve protection under the law. Do unto others as you would have done unto you. If you risk my life by attacking me, I'll have no qualms about risking yours by defending myself.

    In short, if you don't want people to defend themselves against you, don't attack people. Why is this so hard for some people to understand??
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2004
  20. carebear

    carebear Member

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    HTG,

    He sure as hell has the right to defend himself and his family, but if he was a nutter (which the court docs show) he probably shouldn't have firearms around to do it with. If he didn't previously cause unjustifiable harm it wasn't due to lack of trying. :D

    There has to be, or will be, better cases to support a more "American" castle doctrine renaissance in England than Martin.

    Again, it appears to be, case after case, more a problem with "enforcement administration philosophy and legislation" than actual black-letter law.

    And we have that here aplenty. :fire:

    Dammit, I hate it when I hae to change my tune!

    edited to add- actually I meant "have" but I'll kick some Celt props to my Scots brothers, yo. :D
     
  21. agricola

    agricola Member

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    headless,

    which is a nice way of recreating the "outlaw" status of the middle ages. the law already provides for robust self defence, up to and including the use of lethal force. it also (which is what did for Martin) is rather good at distinguishing between those who use that force legitimately and those who claim its protection falsely.

    Martin, as I have repeatedly said, lied about what happened and was found guilty. This farmer told the truth and didnt even get charged. That should be a lesson for everyone.
     
  22. Justin

    Justin Moderator Emeritus

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    And with typical British understatement Agricola pretty much tells us that if Britons were actually allowed to defend themselves that blood would run in the streets. Does that sound familiar to anyone else?

    It does? But I thought you said that it was nigh on impossible for the average citizen of Airstrip One to carry a defensive baton/pepper spray/pistol on his/her person.

    And a cynic would tell you that this farmer wasn't charged because The Powers That Beâ„¢ have grown weary about being drug over the coals as a result of the Tony Martin incident, and would prefer not to raise the ire of the general populace any further.
     
  23. agricola

    agricola Member

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    Justin,

    Wrong again. What headless said was:

    In essence, he says here that any criminal who doesnt respect the law (which is clear, since they are criminals) doesnt deserve the protection of the law. Hence, any person who breaks the law does not deserve his protection - putting them outside the law. The second part of his statement about self defence already exists here, as has been proved, repeatedly, by both the law and events.

    Self defence is not the same as RKBA, as you well know.

    The cynic would be wrong (hardly surprising, the cynic has been wrong all the way through the cynics post).

    On one hand you have a small number of cases where people have gone beyond the law and been punished for it; on the other you have a rather larger number of people who have defended themselves or others and (flying in the face of this boards "wisdom") not been brought to trial, and in many cases lauded for their efforts.

    But why bother admitting that one of this boards most cherished beliefs is in fact a big old pile of steaming BS? After all, its not as if the next lot of stories that come around wont do it for you (the last ten didnt, so I wont hold out much hope).
     
  24. Dain Bramage

    Dain Bramage Member

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    It's just about time for all non-fans of circular reasoning to give it up. Anyone expecting Ag to lay down and admit defeat will have to endure a long series of arguments on the definitions of "lay" and "down".

    Ag has once again defined the argument down to his own little circle of turf, which has nothing to do with the original thread. Self defence is allowed in Britain because the law says it is, and the law is good because it works within the confines of its own parameters as layed down in the law. Never mind that the article is about British subjects questioning the clarity and scope of the self defence laws. Ag waves it away with his magic wand as a "media trumpet". The law is not amused.

    If there is any question in the minds of the American board members that we are speaking different languages:

    I would say most of the people here would disagree. As long as we let Ag define the terms, it is like debating a Leninist in 1923; the effort gets the blood up but is ultimately useless.
     
  25. richyoung

    richyoung Member

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    Allowing self defense but denying access to the tools to effectively do so is akin to having freedom of the press, but being prohibited from using ink, paper, or letters. But then again, The "Mother Country" has the "Official Secrets" act, so I guess they are used to being chattel by now, how far they have fallen! Thank God I'm still a free man in a free country - at least for a little while yet. (Reminds me of why we threw the ir buttts out....)

    BTW - in Texas, under certain conditions, DEADLY force is allowed in defense of property - should be all places.
     
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