Thugs stay free after giving kid w/ autism a life sentence

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alex
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26 Mar 2008, 9:14 am

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THE mum of an autistic boy too terrified to leave his Glasgow home following an attack is taking on law chiefs after being told the culprits won't be punished.

Elizabeth Cooper says Martin, who has Asperger's Syndrome, has been given a life sentence by teenage thugs who smashed his face against a fence, stamped on his head and whipped him with a rubber hose when he was just 13-years-old.

Police told Elizabeth no action would be taken against the youths because they are under 16 and already under supervision for previous charges.

Since the attack, Martin, now 16, has been too afraid to leave the house for more than 10 minutes at a time and Elizabeth is now petitioning the Scottish Government to impose stricter laws on youth offenders.


http://tinyurl.com/2sg2ye


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Chibi_Neko
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26 Mar 2008, 10:04 am

This is why the youth crime laws need to be changed, teens do these aweful things knowing that they can get a way with it.

My cousin is high-functioning autistic, and like me growing up, I respected my superiors and the basics of right and wrong. he is currently 12 or 13, and he was beating up by school-yard bullies, he did not fight back because he was taught that firghting was wrong.

When I was told this I was wishing I was there to put those kids in their place, even though I know it is wrong and the law should handle it, but I am beginning to loose faith in the system... so you can't blame me for thinking that way.

I really hope everything works out for this guy, no one deserves to live in fear.


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iceb
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26 Mar 2008, 11:39 am

This story is sickening...........


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Detren
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26 Mar 2008, 12:37 pm

My friend's house got robbed once, and the police actually told them, that either get out if they try to come back, or fight to kill, because if you leave them alive you will go to jail. I guess that these particular thieves would wait a couple months for people to replace their things then hit them again.

But this was an actual police officer that told her that if you have to confront them, make sure they are dead.



The_Cucumber
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26 Mar 2008, 12:45 pm

The criminals should defiantly be punished. Studies have shown that consistency in punishment is the most effective at reducing crime (strangely the severity of punishment seems to have little effect).

I do find it strange that the reasoning behind not punishing them is that they were already under supervision for previous charges. In a lot of states in the U.S. laws are extremely harsh on repeat offenders (sometimes too much so).



m91
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26 Mar 2008, 2:43 pm

The governments in all these developed countries are too soft. They don't want the criminals to suffer at their hands, so they let innocent people suffer at the hands of criminals instead as it's CLEARLY right to let innocent people suffer. (sarcasm).

Those thugs should really get the death penalty, as they are useless idiots who would spend their whole life going round causing trouble, and they will never do anything positive for the society.

The stupid British government doesn't realise that even if someone is under 16, they are still old enough to take responsibility for their actions.


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Chibi_Neko
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26 Mar 2008, 3:32 pm

m91 wrote:
The stupid British government doesn't realise that even if someone is under 16, they are still old enough to take responsibility for their actions.


Here in Canada the young offender's act is for people 18 and under, it really should be 13 and under.


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TLPG
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26 Mar 2008, 3:35 pm

This is what's wrong with the NT world - this tolerance of physical bullying (or any bullying for that matter).

I sympathise to a degree with regards to the general point about fighting back on the terms of the other - but that doesn't make it right if it's physical. Psychologically I'll bully in retaliation to an attack on me - and these issues with law or any other remedy is the reason.

It would be a whole lot easier though if the laws were in place to put a stop to this nonsense. I feel for the boy - and teenagers who engage in that sort of behaviour do need to be punished. I think the boy has a civil case and a very strong one because he has causation (the fear of going outside as a result of the teen bullies actions). Get the parents of the bullies before a civil court!



DW_a_mom
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26 Mar 2008, 6:24 pm

This particular incident does seem to have been inappropriately handled, but to all those saying lower the age for treating criminals as adults is the right answer, I say ...

Be careful what you wish for.

I have read many cases where someone is punished too harshly, because of the ways the laws are written. It simply is impossible to get at the heart of all the different reasons bad things can happen in laws that must be written in black and white.

Would you prefer those making innocent and relatively harmless mistakes in jail, when they shouldn't be, or criminals free when they shouldn't be? It's going to be one or the other, because no laws can be written to be absolutely perfect for every situation. I tend to figure it is easy to fall into the former group, and so prefer a little leniency in the laws, least an unfair imprisonment happen to me or a loved one.

In this one case, the boys should be in a juvenile center, and not just "supervised."


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Odin
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27 Mar 2008, 8:17 am

The_Cucumber wrote:
Studies have shown that consistency in punishment is the most effective at reducing crime (strangely the severity of punishment seems to have little effect).

I do find it strange that the reasoning behind not punishing them is that they were already under supervision for previous charges. In a lot of states in the U.S. laws are extremely harsh on repeat offenders (sometimes too much so).


I wonder if that's the reason the crime rate is so high here in the US. The US has a highly decentralized common law system that gives individual judges and district attorneys a huge amount of say on what the sentence is on a case-to-case basis. One judge might give you 5 years for a manslaughter conviction while another judge would give you 20 years for the same crime.

Also, IMO if sentences are too harsh they may actually cause more crime as a result of criminals doing all they can to avoid getting caught.


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Odin
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27 Mar 2008, 8:31 am

I've just had a thought. I wonder if some kind of public humiliation of petty criminals and juvenile delinquents would be an effective deterrent. The desire to avoid humiliation and shame is an extremely powerful force, especially for socially conscious teens and young adults. Publicly humiliating a teen delinquent could be much more effective in keeping that teen from breaking the law again then a couple months in jail.


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Izaak
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27 Mar 2008, 8:37 am

Not sure how effective it might be there Odin. Lawbreakers of that kind tend to be some pretty deadbeat dropkicks.

There is a show here called Motorway Patrol (imported TV series from New Zealand.) I remember seeing one episode where they chased some guy in a high powered car at up to 190Kms/hour and he ended up running a red light before pulling over. When he has the camera in his face he actually had the gall to say "Hey ladies, you've seen the car. If recognise me, give me a holler!"

There are some dropkicks out there in which getting picked up by the police is actually a badge of honour. The common slang of 'pig' is not without motive.

On to the OP, my sympathies go out to the family and to the young man in question. It's a shame when the police and courts can no longer fulfill their brief of protecting the innocent and administering justice to the guilty.



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27 Mar 2008, 4:11 pm

What a world we live in. :roll:


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TLPG
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27 Mar 2008, 4:56 pm

Odin wrote:
I've just had a thought. I wonder if some kind of public humiliation of petty criminals and juvenile delinquents would be an effective deterrent. The desire to avoid humiliation and shame is an extremely powerful force, especially for socially conscious teens and young adults. Publicly humiliating a teen delinquent could be much more effective in keeping that teen from breaking the law again then a couple months in jail.


I don't think so, Odin - because nowadays (thanks to the garbage that's on TV) they would actually see that as fun! Perverse I know, but that's what I think the reaction will be. It's hard to humiliate and shame nowadays.

Jail though isn't the answer. The better way to go is enforce community service. Stop them from having any free time (that's where the problem is), and commit them to things that they MUST do. And if they don't do it send them into a detention centre of sorts instead of a jail - and in ISOLATION.



Roxas_XIII
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27 Mar 2008, 5:16 pm

IF I were that kid's dad, I would follow him to school in a tinted car and a loaded shotgun, and makes sure nobody screws with him again.


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27 Mar 2008, 6:05 pm

2 words for the goverment: HATE U


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