Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Away for the Weekend

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  • Joe Wylie,

    I'm aesthetically "brutalised" every time I look out of my living room window, only to have my eyeballs molested by the arse-ugly Sky Phallus. Can I go murder architect Gordon Moller now? Please...

    Good point. Once the whole wide sky's been privatised, and if you happen to be a major shareholder, no jury would convict you. In the meantime, as Dirty Harry Callahan would say, a man's got to know his limitations.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4593 posts Report Reply

  • A S,

    there were no weapons...except for the one belonging to the killer...

    Hindsight is a wonderful thing. If the dead gang member did have a gun, would that have made it ok?

    shoot first, ask questions later. sound really nice. jury liked it. end of story, sounds like.

    The odds of a farmer knowing the ins and outs of law as it pertains to self-defence and reasonable force are pretty unlikely, so I would tend to give more weight to the info as reported being pretty much what happened, rather than a conspiracy where farmers are luring extortionists to their homes so they can go medieval on them...

    Juries aren't stupid, and they tend to have reasonable BS meters, so if the farmer was making it up, it is pretty unlikely he would have got off the way he did.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2007 • 269 posts Report Reply

  • stephen walker,

    conspiracy where farmers are luring extortionists to their homes so they can go medieval on them

    where did anyone say anything like that?
    what a bizarre thing to say

    nagano • Since Nov 2006 • 645 posts Report Reply

  • stephen walker,

    the question for me is, what is legitimate "self defence"?

    no conspiracies there, i'm afraid.

    nagano • Since Nov 2006 • 645 posts Report Reply

  • A S,

    the question for me is, what is legitimate "self defence"?

    If you genuinely want to know, I suggest you read the relevant sections of the Crimes Act for a starter. There is also a whole raft of court decisions over the years that builds into a fairly comprehensive explanation of exactly what legitimate "self defence" looks like.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2007 • 269 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole,

    the question for me is, what is legitimate "self defence"?

    Try looking here. Short version, it's whatever the defendant can convince the jury was believably reasonable at the time. Which, given the recent attacks on the farmer and the circumstances of the victim's presence at the time, went as far as lethal force. I don't think I'd have voted differently had I been on the jury. If you have to wait to see the weapon, you may already be dead before you get a chance to defend yourself.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2007 • 4097 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    And there's a world of difference in what seems reasonable between living in the middle of a big city versus in the country where you know help is a long way away (even if you can trust your neighbours more to help when they do get there).

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19719 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Parks,

    Hindsight is a wonderful thing. If the dead gang member did have a gun, would that have made it ok?

    Interesting point. It seems the potential existence of a gun affects our perception in a funny way, like some deadly Shrodinger-style thought experiment. If there had been a gun there after all, Allen may not even have been prosectuted. Yet the fact of a gun or not would still not have been known for certain by the shooter at the time; he was still "shooting first", either way. Gun = self-defence; no gun = maybe not self-defence. Yet either way, the shooter had no more or less reason to belive that there was a gun when pulling the trigger.

    Getting off my philosophical tangent, the the key to me is: was it reasonable for him to have believed that Collier was likely to be about to reach for a gun and shoot him?

    Given the overall circumstances, I'm inclined to think 'yes'. It's a boardline call, though. I think the background and the circumstances lend credence to Allen's claim that Colllier threatened to kill him, and that Allen believed that to be genuine.

    Wellington • Since May 2007 • 1164 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    It's certainly massively different from the Emery tagger incident, and comparison between the two doesn't bring anything useful to the surface, to my mind.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole,

    It's certainly massively different from the Emery tagger incident, and comparison between the two doesn't bring anything useful to the surface, to my mind.

    The only comparison is that in each case a person died when it wasn't, in the glaring light of hindsight, necessary. Other than that, they have nothing in common.
    In one, someone who was unarmed, didn't present or make clear threats, and had simply defaced property, was chased quite some distance only suburban streets by a man who was simply sick of his property being defaced. In the other, a person came onto private property in a very rural area, demanded money from and threatened to kill a man who'd recently been hospitalised by a serious beating, and then returned to his vehicle and reached out of sight.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2007 • 4097 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole,

    chased quite some distance only suburban streets

    err, "chased quite some distance along suburban streets". Not sure quite where that came from.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2007 • 4097 posts Report Reply

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