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Murder sentences

Discussion in 'Speaker's Corner' started by pdw8, 3 Feb 2006.

  1. pdw8

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 26 Apr 2004

    Posts: 1,603

    Location: Kent/London

    I don't understand the logic of how a judge determines a custodial sentence once someone is convicted. Am example is the murderer of the wealthy banker John Monkton was sentenced to 3 life terms and told he will have to serve a min of 36 years.
    This seems very harsh compared to other sentences so what is the difference? The cynical side of me says the guy was very wealthy so somehow that means the murdere should serve longer terms. I've also noticed that as this was a robbery that went wrong usually the suspect is charged with manslaughter as there was no intent to kill just conduct a robbery.

    bbc link
     
  2. benjo plz.

    Capodecina

    Joined: 15 Jan 2004

    Posts: 14,208

    Location: Hall

    Looking at the article, he attacked indiscriminately, with intent to harm, and kill both of them. The fact he did makes it more than robbery, although it is still harsher than I would expect.
     
    Last edited: 3 Feb 2006
  3. W00dy

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 17 Nov 2003

    Posts: 1,586

    Location: Beside the Seaside !

    I thought the same thing - 36 yrs seems on the face of it quite harsh - but according to the BBC does have previous convictions.

    Though looking again he was given 3 life terms - One for Murder, one for attempted murder and one for armed robbery.

    Tough one.....not sure what to make of it tbh.

    It does seem there is little consistency amongst judges sentencing - this is where categorising murder (a la US) will help clear up some of the inconsistency.
     
  4. benjo plz.

    Capodecina

    Joined: 15 Jan 2004

    Posts: 14,208

    Location: Hall

    That said, in the USA, it would be first degree, and he would probably be sentenced to death.
     
  5. semi-pro waster

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 27 Sep 2004

    Posts: 25,829

    Location: Glasgow

    I'm not totally sure because there is no way for me to know the judges reasoning but I'd suspect at least some of the 'harshness' of the sentence is for the location in which the crime was committed, the background preparations(which appeared to include posing as a postman) and quite possibly the ferocity of the attack as well as the attack on his wife while the daughter was around(watching?).

    Each sentence will depend on the individual circumstances of the case.
     
  6. PikeyPriest

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 21 Jun 2004

    Posts: 1,141

    Personally, i think murder following a break-in shouldnt be classed as manslaughter, but plain murder. By breaking in to a house it is assumed that people may be sleeping or become violent upon seeing you. Defending yourself once you have broken-in doesn`t take away from the fact that you premeditated the break-in and took these risks IMO.
     
  7. mauron

    Gangster

    Joined: 9 Mar 2004

    Posts: 423

    Location: Beccles

    He's a real nasty piece of work, spent most of his life since he was 14 inside for robbery & violence. Apparently he planned this one from his prison cell. I think the judge was informed of his past hence the sentence.
     
  8. The Running Man

    Caporegime

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 34,134

    Location: block 16, cell 12

    no...

    the sentance isnt too harsh.

    its just that other convicts have been given much weaker sentances making this one seem harsh...it5s just the joke that is our legal system.
     
  9. pdw8

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 26 Apr 2004

    Posts: 1,603

    Location: Kent/London

    I never said the sentence was too harsh, just that it seemed alot longer than other murder cases recently.
    Ian Huntley got 40years and that was for 2 murders but the person responsible for the recent racist murder in Liverpool only got 24 years. Most murders only get between 12 and 18 years.
     
  10. robmiller

    Capodecina

    Joined: 26 Dec 2003

    Posts: 16,522

    Location: London

    Judges are just normal people. Obviously they're better trained than most, but you still get some slavish authoritarian who'll slap a murderer with a 40 year sentence or a trendy liberal who'll give a child rapist 60 days.

    In most states in the US (even more traditionally liberal ones), I'm pretty sure you can get the death penalty if the murder you commit accompanies another felony, so in this case he would've been executed which is probably a worse outcome than 36 years inside :)


    Thanks for the awesome contribution!
     
  11. Frosti

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 2 Jun 2004

    Posts: 1,197

    Location: Middlesex

    This pretty much sums it up for me, He has already been jailed for attempted murder and was released without serving the full sentence. He's had his chance to show that he has changed and he hasn't. So the only option is to make sure he won't pose a danger to the public ever again.
     
    Last edited: 4 Feb 2006
  12. The Running Man

    Caporegime

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 34,134

    Location: block 16, cell 12

    no worries, if u take into account that most convicts will only serve 60% of their stated sentance, and the sentance was low to begin with...then u have issues.
     
  13. Meridian

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 11,959

    Location: Vvardenfell


    Er - no they don't necessarily. That's largely true of all other sentences, but not the Life Sentence. The "tariff" of 36 years set here is the MINIMUM that he will serve before he can even be considered for release on licence. Unless a future Home Sec changes the rules, or the sentence is overturned/altered on appeal, then thirty-six years is how long he stays in for at the least.

    As for the manslaughter charge for the accomplice, as opposed to murder: if he went to the crime with the intent of assault, and was reckless as to whether that assault resulted in death; or if he went with the intent to assault and any reasonable person could forsee that death might result, THEN he could be charged with murder. I would guess that the CPS felt that they could not make either of those stick as the defence would probably argue that he assumed that while the owner would be beaten, it would not be severe - therefore any death was entirely accidental to him, if not to the leader. You may not like it, bt that's the law.


    M