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NRA-ILA -- Yep, bad news to be a UK victim!

Discussion in 'Legal' started by P95Carry, Jun 10, 2004.

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  1. P95Carry

    P95Carry Moderator Emeritus

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    NRA-ILA today .....

    Britons Right To Self-Defense Practically Eliminated
    The withdrawal of Englishmen?s right to self-defense is having dire
    consequences in Great Britain: higher crime rate, weak sentences for
    assailants, and even the victims end up thrown in jail, says historian
    Joyce Lee Malcolm.

    http://www.ncpa.org/newdpd/dpdarticle.php?article_id=133&PHPSESSID=a293fbeec324e52af29a6e29e4e03bce

    A portion of the (brief) article. Nothing much we haven't heard before but it still appalls me.
     
  2. Treylis

    Treylis Member

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    I was just talking with someone about the situation in England... and, yep, it's pretty grim.
     
  3. TheEgg

    TheEgg Member

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    Don't worry, Agricola will be along at any minute to assure us that there are NO restrictions on the right to self-defense in the UK.:rolleyes:
     
  4. 7.62FullMetalJacket

    7.62FullMetalJacket Member

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    I have been hearing alot of "chatter" about this fundamental right of self-defence across the pond. They may grow a pair and actually do something to reurn the "right" to the people, I mean priviledge.
     
  5. Critical

    Critical Member

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    i suspect Agricola will be along, and he will be quite clearly correct.

    Anecdotes are not evidence. Anyone can post anecdotes to support their position.

    And if there is no right to self defence in the UK, then no-one told this guy
     
  6. Critical

    Critical Member

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    Or maybe this one

    See, we can swap anecdotes all day..........
     
  7. Werewolf

    Werewolf Member

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    I read the articles that Critical linked to. Interesting.

    However, the problem I see is that UK self defence hinges on the use of reasonable/proportional force.

    WHAT THE HELL IS REASONABLE AND PROPORTIONAL FORCE?

    If a guy attacks me with a knife and all I have is a gun and I shoot him seems to me in the UK I'm gonna be spending time in the joint. After all I didn't respond proportionally or with reasonable force.]

    That guy Martin got sent away for life for shooting two thugs who had repeatedly broken into his home and stolen from him and threatened him.

    Anectdotal evidence aside - the right to self defense in England is all but dead.
     
  8. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

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    Let me make sure I have your argument straight. In this anecdote a man got drunk, grabbed a machete, went to another man's home and attacked him in the hallway of his home with said machete.

    You are holding up the fact that the murder charges against the man who was attacked in his own home were dropped as evidence that the right of self-defense in England is healthy? :confused:
     
  9. Critical

    Critical Member

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    You are making the mistake of assuming that the onus lies on you deciding what is reasonable force. The onus is not on you.

    ""If there has been an attack so that the defence is reasonably necessary, it will be recognised that a person defending himself cannot weigh to a nicety the exact measure of his necessary defensive action. If a jury thought that in a moment of unexpected anguish a person attacked had only done what he honestly and instinctively thought was necessary that would be most potent evidence that only reasonable defensive action had been taken."

    from here

    The Crown prosecution service also

    makes this clear
    "In assessing the reasonableness of the force used, prosecutors should ask two questions:

    was the use of force justified in the circumstances, i.e. was there a need for any force at all? and

    was the force used excessive in the circumstances?

    The courts have indicated that both questions are to answered on the basis of the facts as the accused honestly believed them to be:

    The burden of proof remains with the prosecution when the issue of self-defence is raised. The prosecution must adduce sufficient evidence to satisfy a jury beyond reasonable doubt that the defendant was either:

    not acting to defence himself/herself or another; or
    not acting to defend property; or
    not acting to prevent a crime or to apprehend an offender; or
    if he was so acting, the force used was excessive"

    The Tony Martin case is extremely simple. Tony Martin lied about what happened. He "took the advice of his legal team" and changed his story about what happened. Thats why he was considering sueing his old legal team. You lie in court, don't be surprised when you get found out.

    Also, under clearly established laws, which pre-date all the gun control laws which so seem to upset people 4000 miles away, someone running away from you out a window is not a suitable reason to shoot someone.

    The Tony martin case is virtually unique. And it is not the exception that proves the rule. There are many more cases of proven self-defence, but people like Malcolm don't want to hear them. And incidents involving armed intruders are rare full stop.

    I can also assure you, that if your a farmer and someone comes at you with a knife and you shoot them you wont go to jail.

    Unless of course, you decide to lie about it........
     
  10. Critical

    Critical Member

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    "Let me make sure I have your argument straight. In this anecdote a man got drunk, grabbed a machete, went to another man's home and attacked him in the hallway of his home with said machete.

    You are holding up the fact that the murder charges against the man who was attacked in his own home were dropped as evidence that the right of self-defense in England is healthy? "

    from the article:

    "Police arrested Mr O'Connor in connection with the incident but he was not charged. "

    You don't have it straight. What murder charges?

    And Malcolms article is claiming the right to self defence has been "practically eliminated". Bunk. I have also never claimed the law is "healthy". But it is there and is used way more often than you think.

    There are areas where the law needs reform. But this kind of statement is hysterical claptrap.
     
  11. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

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    You don't have it straight. I was referring to the Sofrin link you provided. Here is a quote from that article:

    "A father of two has had a murder charge against him dropped after it was found he had been acting in self-defence.

    Barry Sofrin, of Little Snoring, Norfolk, had been charged with the murder of fellow villager 44-year-old Richard Saunders who died in an altercation on 9 August 2003."

    They charged him with murder after a drunk man broke into his house with a machete and attacked him in the hallway of his own home! The news story didn't even mention Sofrin having a weapon, the death was from Sofrin striking him as he fought a man armed with a machete.
     
  12. 7.62FullMetalJacket

    7.62FullMetalJacket Member

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    Wel, I hope the prosecutor and jury are available during the next attack so that they can provide real-time advice to the defendant. Otherwise, there is no clear allowance for self-defense and the defender must be ready to prove in court, against fickle standards, what is and is not allowed.
     
  13. Iain

    Iain Member

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    In the Sofrin case there is no reference to witnesses in those articles, nor whether or not these two had a history.

    Just a thought.
     
  14. Critical

    Critical Member

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    Sorry my mistake, but the point still holds. The right to self defense has not been "practically eliminated". It clearly operates. And as the other example shows, it does not follow you will be charged by the Police if you act in self defense. Your incredulity is specious at best.


    Fullmetaljacket:

    "Otherwise, there is no clear allowance for self-defense and the defender must be ready to prove in court , against fickle standards, what is and is not allowed."

    I post again from the CPS:

    "The burden of proof remains with the prosecution when the issue of self-defence is raised
     
  15. 7.62FullMetalJacket

    7.62FullMetalJacket Member

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    Ok.

    But what is the standard for defining self-defense?

    Can a citizen reasonably know what constitutes self-defense?
     
  16. Critical

    Critical Member

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    A citizen can reasonably know, but it is not an easy area. It isn't in any country. It would be considered reasonable to kill someone if they are armed or are attacking you. However it would not be reasonable if you knock someone unconscious and then batter them 30 times over the head with a baseball bat. Or if they are running away from you it is not reasonable to chase after them and stab them.

    The best summary of UK law is here

    But again, we are moving away into an argument about what is self-defence. It is clear that Malcolms assertion that "self defense is practically eliminated" is bunk
     
  17. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

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    Specious? I assure you my incredulity is quite genuine. Even in the parts of America that aspire to the self-defense laws of your nation, it would be extremely unusual to bring murder charges against a man who was attacked in his own home with a machete and fought back weaponless.

    From your perspective, perhaps that seems regular and unworthy of comment. From my perspective, that you would cite this in defense of your nation's laws on self-defense speaks more to the issue than silence would have.

    St.John
    True. There might well be an explanation of why charges were brought that I would find perfectly acceptable.

    The point (from my perspective) is that no information supporting that conclusion can be found in that story, yet Critical seems to feel that this is perfectly good evidence to present in support of the thesis that self-defense is well and good in England. The fact that it didn't even occur to him that this article could be construed as more of an argument against his case than for it tends to reinforce my belief that the mindset there is much different than the U.S. and not something I wish to see take root here.
     
  18. 7.62FullMetalJacket

    7.62FullMetalJacket Member

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    Can the average person read and understand that long dissertation? Can you summarize, in lay terms, what the average guy is allowed for self-defense?

    I submit that unless the law is very clear regarding self-defense, then the person being assaulted may hesitate to consider the legal ramifications of defense. That is where I draw the line. If the defendant is more worried about the courts than his life, then you have no right to self-defense.

    Over here in the good ol USA it is real simple:

    "I feared for my life" is justified in most areas. As well as "my home is my Castle."

    However, more socialistic areas, such as California, are adopting the British slide where if you have a route of escape, then defense with lethal force is not justified. That is why we are interested in the happening there. Many "enlightened" jurisdictions here take their lead from Britain and Australia. Which ultimately spereads like a bad rash.

    If the lack of self-defense is seen as a problem there, then we can point to it here and say that IT DID NOT WORK.
     
  19. Critical

    Critical Member

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    "Specious? I assure you my incredulity is quite genuine. Even in the parts of America that aspire to the self-defense laws of your nation, it would be extremely unusual to bring murder charges against a man who was attacked in his own home with a machete and fought back weaponless"

    And theres the point in a nutshell. It's extremely unusual in the UK too!! People like Malcolm take cases like Tony Martin and portray the exception as the rule. Malcolm only wants to talk about the cases she thinks support her case. Its the only cases you will read about on here.

    Theres a name for that.

    Hysteria.

    there are plenty of cases where people have fought back against attackers. But Malcolm takes difficult cases to make sweeping judgements.

    There has to be balance in cases of self defense. Is it perfect? No? Is there a case for reform? Possibly

    Are Britons unable to defend themselves? Hysterical garbage........
     
  20. Critical

    Critical Member

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    "Can the average person read and understand that long dissertation? Can you summarize, in lay terms, what the average guy is allowed for self-defense"

    I already have above, but the thing is, the average lay person wouldn't even bother to read it. Why?

    Becasue, on the whole they aren't worried about it.....
     
  21. Partisan Ranger

    Partisan Ranger Member

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    Lady I know is moving her whole family to Australia. Sounds nice but I almost wanted to warn her she can't defend her family with much of anything down under anymore. Not even a sword.
     
  22. 7.62FullMetalJacket

    7.62FullMetalJacket Member

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    :confused: Crime is on the rise and nobody is worried about self-defense?
     
  23. F4GIB

    F4GIB Member

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    CRITICAL posts
    Critical, I notice that you are new and that your profile is blank.

    Do you live in the UK?
    Are you law trained?
    Do you have a police or prosecutor background?
    Why should we pay attention to your postings?

    Have you read Olson & Kopel, All The Way Down The Slippery Slope: Gun Prohibition in England and Some Lessons for Civil Liberties in America, 22 Hamline L. Rev. 399 (1999) ? It is available online at http://www.davekopel.org/2A/LawRev/SlipperySlope.htm
     
  24. P95Carry

    P95Carry Moderator Emeritus

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    F4GIB ... I also am wondering about a very empty profile. It'd be interesting to know the background... and I'm not being facetious.
     
  25. Critical

    Critical Member

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    "Crime is on the rise and nobody is worried about self-defense?"

    no i never siad that. What I am saying is that the chances of being faced with an intruder or an assailant, armed or otherwise is so small, worrying about what self defense laws are is not somethging most people bother about.

    Of course, you might get mugged, you might get robbed, and there are some bad areas for crime, but most people are not cowering in their homes afraid to go out.
     
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