Wednesday 10 December 2008

Justice, Ha, ha, ha............

Just to update you on what happened to the 'nice young men' who attacked my eldest son back in July.

The Crown Prosecution Service, in their infinite wisdom, decided it wasn’t worth the cost of prosecuting, or there just isn’t enough room in the prisons, or they just can’t be arsed, or something, to prosecute the youngest of Nick's attackers, even though he is a persistent youth offender because, in the words of the CPS lawyer, "for what he'd get it just isn't worth it" !

The elder one, who pulled the knife, was prosecuted only for having the knife because he admitted it.  Actually he handed it over to the police when they arrested him.    Seven weeks after the attack Nick was told he would have to identify his attacker via Viper Identification, where he would see 9 faces on a video screen and had to choose from them.   Nick said it was virtually impossible because he only saw a fraction of the man's face at the time, it being obscured by a hood, he got no sense of height, build, mannerisms from the faces on screen and the time lapse had blurred his memory.   Consequently he picked out the wrong person.  The CPS said they couldn't prosecute the man for the robbery because Nick couldn't identify him.   

The fact that the two men were arrested four minutes away from the scene, whilst Nick was on the phone to a 999 operator at the time giving a description, bore no weight.   Even the fact that they fitted the description, the elder one had a knife which fitted the description Nick was giving, the younger one admitted they had been involved in an incident, all this bore no weight either.

I immediately complained to the Prime Minister, my MP, the Home Secretary, opposition MPs and anyone else I could think of, which brought an explanitary letter from the local CPS office with the offer of a meeting.   Of course we took up the offer - they were only expecting Nick but his wife, MWM and myself turned up with a list of questions to ask.

We rattled them a few times with pertinent questions but all we got were excuses.   We asked why if the younger man wasn't being prosecuted he couldn't be brought as a witness against the elder man - the CPS's answer was "we don't have plea bargaining in this country" a downright lie!  They admitted that the delay in asking Nick to identify his attacker had prejudiced the case but insisted that they could not prosecute without the identification.    We asked how many people were in the area at the time that fitted the description Nick was giving at the time of the arrest; how many addmitted they had been involved in an incident and how many had a knife - they couldn't answer!  We asked if the CCTV cameras at the supermarket on the road where the incident took place had been checked - they hadn't but they promised to ask the police to check them - to date this has not been done.   I asked if Nick had banged his head when he fell and died from the injury making it impossible to identify his attacker, would they have used the existing evidence to prosecute, they said there would probably be forensic evidence.   We pointed out that there would be no more evidence than they had at present  so they would have to use that and let a jury decide - they couldn't answer.   The truth is it all boils down to cost and statistics and the fact that, thankfully, Nick wasn't murdered!   The policeman in charge of the case said in all the time he's been a policeman we are the only people that have ever challenged the CPS and he just wished more people would do it because the CPS do exactly as they want.

The outcome of this fiasco was that the 'knife attacker' was sentenced to 9 months, suspended for 2 years and a 12 month supervision order just for having the knife.   It came out in court that he'd previously  had a reprimand and a final warning, though what for we don't know, but he is obviously not a previously law abiding citizen.     

We feel that the CPS should have prosecuted him for the robbery and left it to a judge and jury to decide whether he is guilty on that count, they were sure of a conviction for possessing the knife.    The judge said had he been prosecuted for the robbery he would definitely have been serving time.     To add insult to injury the judge also said the man is not capable of doing paid or unpaid work, so Nick is working to keep him on benefits!

Such is justice in this country.

Needless to say Nick has complained about the way the CPS have handled the case, we await their reaction before informing the media of the shortcomings of the Justice system in this case.  I'll keep you posted.

On a good note though Nick has just landed a dream job!    You may remember when he was incapacitated by the attack he was made redundant and once the plaster was off he took another job working 40 hours a week on Friday, Saturday and Sunday night just to pay the bills.    Now he has got this dream job we are thinking whilst what happened in July was terrible, it makes you think "it happened for a reason" doesn't it!

Best Graphics - MySpace/Hi5/Friendster


TopChamp said...

sorry to hear you didn't get justice.

GLAD to hear about the job.

Your blog is so festive - love it!

TBM said...

Oh my goodness. I am sorry for the terrible time you all are having. But congratulations to your son on finding his "dream job".

And I must agree with Top Champ--your blog is the most festive I've seen :-)

Dumdad said...

The identification ruling is a nonsense. Does that mean as long as a robber or a murderer is wearing a mask, and therefore cannot be identified, he can't be prosecuted?

It's a sorry state of affairs. We used to pride ourselves on British justice. No more.

At least, there's a happy ending for your son but that's not the case for many.

CG said...

What a depressing tale; I feel disgusted. I'm so glad he got his dream job though!!

MarmiteToasty said...

Bloody hell, Im disgusted with the outcome... not the dream job, but the law system....

Do you remember my Ben that got punched whilst walking with 2 of his mates through a rough part of town, he was attacked for no reason and someone punched him so hard it broke his jaw in 2 places, and smashed out his front teeth.
, emergency surgery the following day and 8 weeks with his jaw wired shut... he did manage to go back to work 5 weeks after still with a wired mouth, his friend that was with him got a beer bottle across the back of his head.... well that was like 18 months ago or so.... the 2 youths responsible for it back almost 10 months ago, both got just over a year in prison no early release.... and my Ben only this week got a cheque from the Criminal Justice board for just under £6,000...

He says even though the money will be nice, it was not worth the agony and pain and hell he went through....

But, unlike your nick at least a little bit of justice seemed to of been dealt....

and yes, somethings do happen for a reason....


buffalodick said...

Same in this country- they'll procecute an impaired driver who is a tax paying upright citizen for the revenue, but let dangerous crimminals out early, or never send them to jail- because that costs money!

Empress Bee (of the high sea) said...

good grief! at least he got a wonderful job and i am very happy for that. the rest of it? too bad, probably would have been the same here too... sadly.

smiles, bee

Sandi McBride said...

Unfortunately the law is becoming redundant...we complained bitterly about how hard we worked to bring in the bad guys and how fast the judges turned them back out on the street to repeat their offenses...hope Nick is doing well, and I'd not let this lesson go unheeded...become a thorn in their side...infections have a way of bursting...

Anndi said...

Are these CPS people elected officials? Think maybe they were afraid they wouldn't get a conviction, thus bringing down their "success" ratio?

Hopefully next time they attack someone, they won't murder the poor soul.

Yay for Nick's new job!!!

nitebyrd said...

Justice there sounds like justice here. A sorry state to be sure. Glad that your son got his dream job so there is a little good that came out of his ordea.

Catch said...

I am glad for Nick, getting a great job. As for the rest of it...they wonder why everything is so bad anymore....all they do is slap criminals on the wonder we have so much crime in our world.

Ron said...

I really admire the way you and your family pursued this case. You went in very well prepared with great questions!

Like several of your U.S. commentors have already virtually is the same here.

And you're so makes you think "It happened for a reason!"

Postive way to look at it, dear lady!

And I'm so happy for Nicks job!


Cloudia said...

Good for dear Nick! three cheers!
Justice is rarely beautiful; just glad your boy is moving on.
Great card & music!
Music suggestion? Gamble & Huff, The Sound of Philadelphia (TSOP). You'll be surprised at all the great hits!! aloha, you Gem, MomiLani!

Jeff B said...

I'm sure the word frustrating only begins to scratch the surface. Thank god Nick has found a silver lining behind this cloud.

Dr.John said...

Glad your son got his dream job.
I though the justice system in Crystal Falls where I used to live was bad. I swear they would plea bargain murder down to jay walking. The District Attorney was just to lazy to prosecute.

Robin said...

maybe the dream job is nick's justice?

i hope you all continue to fight this, though. If nothing else, to stop someone else from going through what your family has gone through..or worse. And, I still think Nick is a hero!

You know I'm not going to be in the holiday spirit this year, but even I have to admit those snowmen up there? totally cool.

G-Man said...

THAT SUCKS!!!!!!!!

Anyway, Thank You so much for the Birthday Serenade!!!
You are like a Rare Pearl.....G

david mcmahon said...

Yes, I remember your original post about this. Great to hear about his new job.

Travis Cody said...

Keep after it! True reform only comes when citizens hold the authorities accountable. You are all doing the right thing.

And congratulations to Nick! He deserves that positive result with his job.

Good luck in your continued work to improve the justice system.

lettuce said...

how frustrating

it can't help you all in recovering from this trauma

but such good news about the job!

Shrinky said...

What a terrible state of affairs. How demotivating for the police too - what's the point of catching anyone, if CPS can't be arsed to prosecute? So now this little hooligan is out with his knife again, free to maim or murder at will. Oh sweetie, I feel for you, the frustration and anger must be unbearable - and well done for turning that to action, and demanding answers.

So glad your lad has managed to salvage one good thing from out of this miserable episode.

Julia Phillips Smith said...

It's weird about how Nick got his dream job - a very, very hard way to get it, but I really am glad that worked out for him. As for hounding the authorities on what isn't working for your son's case - I think it speaks volumes that the policeman is grateful that you're kicking up a fuss. He and most people who work within the system must go grey with the feeling of having their hands tied behind their back all the time.

RiverPoet said...

God has your son in His hands. I'm so glad that he got his dream job and can start to move on. I stopped trusting the justice system (at least in this country) a long time ago, when my cousin's murder was swept under the rug as suicide.

You did all you could, my friend. I hope that God brings peace to your heart - D

cheshire wife said...

Good news that your son has got his dream job.

Well done for challenging the CPS. Justice in this country is a sorry state of affairs and the benefits system in is overdue for a big change.

Akelamalu said...

It's just the norm here now that criminals get away with the crime Topchamp. I'm glad you like the decorations m'dear. :)

Ah the dream job is great news after a very difficult few months JAPRA. so pleased you like the festive look. :)

That is our point entirely Dumdad but the CPS insist it is correct! Nick was extremely lucky to escape with a broken foot, so many have died in similar circumstances.

It is disgusting and frustrating CG but Nick and the family have recovered thank goodness.

I can understand the hell you and your lad must have gone through after that attack Marmie and I'm pleased that justice was served on Ben's attackers, though they didn't get long enough in my opinion. There doesn't seem to be any consistency in the justice system does there?

You got it spot on Buff!

From what everyone says it would seem that justice is the same the world over Bee!

I'm pretty sure my card is marked because of all the fuss I've made over this Sandi, but I just won't let it go. It may not do Nick's case much good but it may help someone else hopefully.

The Crown Prosecution Service are Queen's Council Anndi so work on behalf of the country. You have got it right it all boils down to statistics!

Fate has a strange way of working sometimes doesn't it nitebyrd!

Yes Catch a slap on the hand seems to be just about all criminals get these days! :(

I'm a firm believer in things 'happening for a reason' and fate Ron, and Nick getting this job has just confirmed this for me.

Thanks Cloudia. :)
When I change the music I'll keep your request in mind.

Nick doesn't dwell on things unlike me Jeff. He would just let it go but I will have the last word!

Crystal Falls sounds just like here Dr. John!

Thanks for your kind thoughts Robin and I'm so pleased the snowmen brought a smile to your face honey. xx

Yes it does G-man! So glad you enjoyed the birthday serenade. xx

Thanks David :)

Thats exactly what I think Trav, I'll keep on fighting you can be sure of it. Thanks honey.

We are moving on Lettuce the fight is going on in the background. :)

The police are just so frustrated, they were convinced they had a waterproof case, so the CPS have let us and them down Shrinky. The new job was just brilliant news for all of us.

That is exactly what the police said Julia. I will keep on badgering the authorities - I'm like a terrier when I get my teeth into something - I don't let go!

Thank you Riverpoet. I'm sorry to hear about your cousin's case, that must be a terrible thing to have to live with. I know God was looking after Nick that day, things could have been so different.

storyteller said...

How frustrating for your son and your entire family who were all looking for real justice and to protect others through the court system. It's discouraging to learn of such injustices.

Methinks that's Johnny Mathis singing ... I haven't heard him for a while and have never heard this Christmas song ... it's lovely ;--)

By the way ... I love all your nifty holiday animated graphics. Do you mind if I 'snag' a few ... like this Santa and the dancing snowmen?
Hugs and blessings,

Lulda Casadaga said...

The one good thing is that your son is still alive!

Hell, same crap in this country...criminals get away with murder!!

But, I believe in Karma...don't worry those bastards that hurt your son will have their day!

Also, I the Great Lulda, send over special whammys for those bastards. :D I see baseball bats hittin heads...

Unknown said...

Justice can take strange forms, some of them being unjust.

Something over 20 years ago, my oldest son, Nick, was jumped by 4 older boys in a mall parking lot. Thankfully a security guard came by and put an end to the attack. Still, Nick was hospitalized.

Because all of the attackers were juveniles,we were not informed of the outcome of the cases. Except for the ringleader, a 16-year-old who had a long history with the courts. Threatened with being tried as an adult, he confessed and was sent to a juvenile camp (prison) for 18 months,until he reached age 18.

I suspect he eventually ended up in the prison system for crimes he committed after reaching the age of 18.

Linda said...

I have always believed that all things happen for a reason and even though it was a terrible way to get it, I'm very glad to hear that Nick got his dream job and some minor 'good' came out of all this.

As for your CPS, wow - does it ever sound like our court system over here in the States. The criminals have so many more rights than the victims and that's just completely and totally wrong.

I still hope that there is some justice for Nick in all of this and will keep my fingers crossed that CPS rethinks its stance and act accordingly.

Donnetta said...

Hello, "A:" Wow. I call it "there is no justice" system. Incredible.

So glad son found the wonderful job, though. Christmas gift!

I'm posting some Christmas things, too. Fun.

Love your Christmas music, too! D

Lo Kelween said...

laws are made by men, justice is man's saying. so...there's not always fair game in this world. sigh...

Daryl said...

The legal system here in the US is the same way ... it costs a lot to prosecute and if they cant be assured a win in court they dont bother. BUT .. if something good has actually come of this, I say HOORAY for your son and FEH to the legal system and those thugs


Akelamalu said...

I think we're all agreed that the justice and benefits system here is crap Cheshire Wife, thanks for your kind comment about Nick's job. x

Yes it is frustrating Storyteller. It is Johnny Mathis - hasn't he got a lovely voice? You can snag the graphics if you like no problem. :)

Oh we are so grateful that Nick is still here Lulda, I don't even want to think about the alternative! I believe in Karma too m'dear so I'm sure the toerag who did it will get his eventually.

How terrible for your son Nick, it makes you wonder what the world is coming to doesn't it?

I agree Linda things do happen for a reason.
I pointed out in the meeting to the CPS lawyers that the public think CPS stands for Criminal Protection Service - they were not amused!

In Britain we used to be proud of our justice system Donnetta, not any more! So glad you like the music.

You're not wrong Eelwind!

You got it right Daryl! At least there has been some good at the end of it. :)

Jo Beaufoix said...

I am so mad at this whole situation. It must be get wrenching that justice has not been served. So glad Nick has his new job though. Karma and all that. Maybe they'll get what they deserve some other way too.

Jo Beaufoix said...

I am so mad at this whole situation. It must be get wrenching that justice has not been served. So glad Nick has his new job though. Karma and all that. Maybe they'll get what they deserve some other way too.