This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Retention Of The Mandatory Life Sentence For Murder

2775 words - 12 pages

Murder can only be described as the most harmful and offensive of all crimes. It seemed for centuries both "just" and "fair" to punish murderers with the retributive sentence to death. However throughout the years the penalty of death has proven "unpopular" and "not necessary". Until the Homicide Act 1957 all persons convicted of murder were automatically sentenced to death. By s5 of that Act, certain types of murder were singled out and designated "capital murder". These continued to be punishable by death, whilst the remaining types of murder were punishable by imprisonment for life. In effect having two degrees of murder. The distinction between "capital murder" and "non-capital murder" ...view middle of the document...

The implementation and administration of the mandatory life sentence gave rise to problems and severe criticisms. There are many arguments, opinions and points of view for this controversial area, this essay will focus on three main arguments in the area of politics, the judiciary and the social involvement of citizens, also highlighting areas where change is needed and making recommendations for the Criminal Justice system.In all other cases apart from murder the judge has "powers" to sentence to fit the crime. Although these can be somewhat limited by way of "doctrine of precedent", the judge can use his discretion when sentencing a criminal. The mandatory life sentence takes away this discretion and the judge can only set a "tariff" of how long the criminal must serve before being considered for parole. This is where the role of politics comes into play. The (then) Home Secretary, Michael Howard introduced the "public acceptability clause" (Cullen and Newell 1999:p23), enabling the Home Secretary to have a final say on which criminals should be released. This happened in the case of Myra Hindley (2002). The Home Secretary (and previous Home Secretaries) would not consider her for parole, due to the fear of losing votes at election time. Public voice and participation is seen as a key factor in the changes made in the Criminal Justice policies and practises. Public voice represents citizenship, which turns to empowerment, reflecting the public as consumers of public services (James Anne 1998:p65). Law Lords ruled in 2002, that to allow a politician (who has no training in law) rather than judges to decide sentences is a breach of the Human Rights Act (2000) (Clare Dyer 2002, The Guardian). The argument is clear, by abolishing the mandatory life sentence; this could take the politics out of sentencing practise and place the decisions firmly in the courts.The changes in society have to be taken into consideration when making decisions regarding the mandatory life sentence. Criminal Justice policies like all social policy are liable to change, and when change comes it appears to be radical and surprising (Faulkener 1996 in Anne James 1988:p87). A key issue is if the mandatory life sentence were abolished, modern sentencing would need to be put into practise. For example, with cases such as Tony Martin and Sarah Thornton, found guilty of murder (and many more not so high profile cases, too many to mention), the judge, when found guilty by the jury, has to sentence them to life imprisonment. This can be seen as a weakness of the mandatory sentence, which seems to classify all murders into one category, and this is argued by some to be legally and morally unfair. The sadistic sexual murderer of Sarah Payne (a defenceless child) has had the exact same sentence of life imprisonment, of that of Sarah Thornton, who killed her violent, and abusive husband. While being careful to distinguish, all murders are horrific, but the elements and circumstances...

Other Papers Like Retention Of The Mandatory Life Sentence For Murder

Theme Of Murder In A Rose For Emily And Killings

861 words - 4 pages      In the short story 'A Rose For Emily'; and the short story 'Killings'; people have been murdered and the motivations for the killings are understandable but never the less still murders. The reason for murder in 'A Rose For Emily'; is not as clearly shown as with 'Killings';, that story is a classic 'eye for an eye'; type story. The main character in 'A Rose for Emily'; (Emily) and the main character in 'Killings'; (Matt) both kill out of

Should the Death Penalty Be Mandatory for People That Kill Other People

1557 words - 7 pages Should the death penalty be mandatory for people that kill other people PANNASASTRA UNIVERSITY OF CAMBODIA Commitment to excellence Commitment to excellence PROFESSIONAL WRITING HOMEWORK ESSAY Topic Should the Death Penalty Be Mandatory For People That Kill Other People? Submitted to Professor LY Meng Written By NHEN Socheath May 30, 2014 Brainstorming Process Should the death penalty be mandatory for

A Reaserch Study on Accountancy Program Retention Policy and Survival Rate of Students in the Philippines

1455 words - 6 pages Transcript of Copy of EFFECTIVENESS OF RETENTION POLICY AMONG ACCOUNTANCY STUDENTS 1. There are no common problems among accountancy students on why they fail their accounting subjects. 2. Retention policy of an accountancy student is very important in order for them to become a Certified Public Accountant. HYPOTHESES INTRODUCTION 1. What are the common problems why accountancy students fail to pass their accounting subjects? 2. What

Memory Retention This Essay Was Designed To Give Background On The Information-Processing Approach Of Cognition

1437 words - 6 pages memories, stratified through the use of suitable keywords. The frequency of the memories recalled from a given time period can be interpreted as an estimate for the probability that one will recall a memory from this year. It would be a mistake to interpret the curves of Galton-Crovitz experiments as frequencies. Instead, the Galton-Crovitz cueing method measures a probability density function of memory age.By administering this same technique to a 59

Preparing for the Real Life

1253 words - 6 pages Preparing For The Real Life “Colleges and universities turn out millions of detective products: its students,” according to Marty Nemko (563). Today, importance of education is growing continuously because future relies on the college students. Most college students believe that college should be preparation for the real world that awaits them because they need higher education to build their future and to achieve in their future. And

Neighborhood Violence In The Murder Of Thirty Of My Neighbors By Jim Myers

1173 words - 5 pages essay will have an impact on his or her life. I believe that people would rather be blind to the truth, then shown the true horrors that occur every day. We as a society have gotten comfortable with our ability to change the channel or flip the newspaper page when we read or hear something that frightens or discomforts us. This is why it is essential for these stories of brutality and murder be heard and accepted as fact. For those of us

Should The Willfull Transmission Of Hiv Be Treated As Attempted Murder?

1814 words - 8 pages contracting the disease is totally unaware of the potential danger to which they have been exposed. The harsh, life changing effects of HIV and AIDS are well known and widely understood across the United States today. Regardless, the spread of the disease has not slowed down neither nationally nor globally and without a cure in sight. We are now forced to rely only on preventative education and intensive drug treatments for those who are living

The Life Of Reason

676 words - 3 pages . Much of what the wise Athenian says in regard to these subjects is an attempt to show the superiority of leading a life of reason. As Socrates puts it, the "unexamined life is not worth living for a human being." Yet, there is much controversy over the beliefs of Socrates. Many people are in disagreement with his conflicting philosophic nature of life. A good example of how Socrates brings about conflict of opinion can be found in

The Life of Xuanzang

1819 words - 8 pages journey. Several decades after Xuanzang returned from India, his disciples Huili and Yanzong wrote his biography. Based on oral accounts from their “Dharma Master” and their own observations of his life and vocation in China, they constructed his experiences on paper. Since the primary source of the historical account is not Xuanzang but the deliberations of his disciples based on their own observations and memory of oral accounts, it is not

The Meaning Of Life

675 words - 3 pages , and yet the only things we know that have meanings have been created by man. So maybe to find the meaning of life (which was not created by man) we have to look at other things which were not created by man. Such as animals and plants. Animals, to humans, DO have meanings, whether it's for fun, love, food, sport etc. Trees which we have given the meaning of shelter, furniture, fire etc. But these things which were not man made only have a meaning

The Life of Pi

945 words - 4 pages Ocean, in the company of a zebra, a hyena, an orangutan and a Bengal tiger named Richard Parker – all striving in a ugly competition for survival. Some of the animals kill and eat each other, and Pi himself goes from being a vegetarian to eating meat in desperation. At the end, Pi and the tiger are the only survivors and they both go their own way to living life. Pi is later questioned by Japanese investigators and when he gives them the animal

Related Essays

Sentence Transformations For English Language Learners; Examples Of Semantic Ambiguity

1312 words - 6 pages )________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________3. Finally, he was found not guilty on the charge of lying under oath? (ACQUITTED)________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________4. If you don't start showing some remorse you will be sent to prison for life? (INCARCERATED

The Murder Of The Iceman Essay

1596 words - 7 pages The Murder of Oetzi An unexpected visit in the night led to the devastating destruction of the Italian Alps village. The wind gusted across the entire village as it took with it clumps of orange, red, and yellow crunchy leaves which spread the smells of decomposed leaves. While the hooting owls softly accompanied the soothing sounds of the winds. The trees that surrounded the village stood eerily still where most of them were naked and barren

The Sentence Of Rizal To Exile In Dapitann

573 words - 3 pages Name : Ivy Ruth O. Inogada Teacher : Florencio Cuizon TH SENTENCE O RIZAL TO EXILE IN DAPITAN “Difficulties are not the reasons to give up but an inspiration to move on.” This dictum I think was on the mind of Dr. Jose P. Rizal when he was in Dapitan. He never gave up serving our country’s cause, even though the Spanish tried to deteriorate his life by threatening Jose

The Murder Of Somer Thompson Essay

520 words - 3 pages killer. Some of that reward money came from Crimestoppers who urged anyone with information to anonymously call 1-866-845-TIPS. Florida Governor Charlie Crist issued a statement on the findings in the case including urging everyone to “say a prayer for Somer’s family”. On Sunday March 28, 2010 a Florida man who was being held on pornography charges in Mississippi was charged with the murder of Somer Thompson. Jarred Mitchell Harrell had