Tuesday, March 04, 2008

A good judgement

This how justice should be administered, rather than throwing people in jail at every turn:

A bottle-wielding thug has been spared a prison sentence – so he can pay for his victim's cosmetic surgery.
Off-duty soldier David Holberry, 24, was left with a deep scar on his forehead when Robert Hart smashed him in the face with a bottle in Preston city centre.

Now – in a landmark ruling – a judge has ordered Hart to pay his victim £2,500 after hearing the life-changing surgery was not available on the NHS.

Private Holberry has backed the decision to spare his attacker jail and said: "If he goes to jail, how is that going to help me?"

I was just surprised that it was a landmark ruling. Yes it was a stupid and vicious attack but anything that keeps people out of jail has to be a good thing, especially if that person has a job they would probably lose.

As well as the compensation, an absolute must in all cases IMHO, there is a punishment/deterrent element:
Hart, of Leyland Road, Penwortham, pleaded guilty to unlawful wounding. He has no previous convictions.

Wayne Jackson, defending, said: "He is ashamed of what he did, he acted on the spur of the moment in an argument which had nothing to do with him."

Judge Brown ordered him to pay his victim £2,500 and placed him on an 18-month community order together with an unpaid work requirement of 200 hours.

Although something a bit harsher may have been appropriate given the use of a bottle

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