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In the Dock

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In the Dock

I`m no legal eagle.... and I`m not guilty..... BUT... if you saw me "in the dock", flanked by "guards"... and you were a member of the jury ( or indeed just a "visitor" watching the proceedings).. do you think of me as "innocent, until proven guilty"  or.... "guilty until he proves otherwise"...
In other words... would your view of my innocence or guilt be swayed by where I am standing in the court ?
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Re: In the Dock

Now what have you been up to Wink
There might be a suggestion that if you are in the dock then a good case has been compiled for a safe prosecution and therefore you might well be guilty on the 'no smoke without fire' rule.
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Re: In the Dock

Guilty............. but I could change my mind on that providing you made it worth my while !  Wink
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Re: In the Dock

Got to admit yes, I'd say guilty if you're surrounded by guards who are hell bent on keeping you there. First thing I'd think is that you'd obviously done it.
This is actually a very interesting point you've made shutter. i can't help but wonder if anyone has ever pointed this out to anyone officially (Mind you, officially the jury can only go on the evidence provided).
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Re: In the Dock

As we know a jury can be out for hours deliberating as each person interprets what they have seen and heard in their own way.
Personal opinions shouldn't get in the way but it's human nature.
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Re: In the Dock

Would you be fully restrained as well?
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Re: In the Dock

LOL If you go to court like that you're definately guilty!
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Re: In the Dock

Flanked by Guards, obviously guilty until proved innocent
..............................Flanked by Guards - wouldn't be allowed in my court
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Re: In the Dock

There's only innocents on this forum.
Now Zen, but a +Net residue.
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Re: In the Dock


And that is how you would view me? in the courtroom? in the dock? as INNOCENT ?
I rather expected to have some serious discourse on this matter.... rather than superluous remarks.
Imagine yourself  "in the dock"...
( and for those interested... no, I am not "up before the beak".... it was a thought that crossed my mind ... comparing the "english" courtroom with the "american" courtroom.. where the defendant is usually sitting at a table with his counsel...
dick:quote
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Re: In the Dock

Quote from: shutter
[Moderator's note by Dick (Strat):  Full quote of preceding post removed, as per Forum Rule]

Can i quote that?  Cheesy
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Re: In the Dock

It was just an uncharacteristic slip in all the excitement. Wink
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itsme
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Re: In the Dock

You are guilty if not the police and CPS are not doing their jobs.
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Re: In the Dock

Quote from: shutter
I rather expected to have some serious discourse on this matter....

It's hard to be serious when thinking about being surrounded by strange people in cloaks and wigs.

American judges are so much more easy going.
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Re: In the Dock

Quote from: 7up
This is actually a very interesting point you've made shutter. i can't help but wonder if anyone has ever pointed this out to anyone officially

As it happens, there's a recent article on this in the British Journal of Criminology: "Putting the Defendant in Their Place - Why Do We Still Use the Dock in Criminal Proceedings?" by Linda Mulcahy, Professor of Law at the LSE. Sorry I can't quote it all, but it's under copyright. Quick precis:
The dock, as a place for the accused during trial, emerged in the 18th century as an extension of the bail-dock, where prisoners were held while awaiting trial. Court layout increasingly separated lawyers from their clients. However many provincial courts lacked a dock. There is still no statutory requirement for a court to have a dock, but from the 1970s the Court Standards and Design Guide has required standard and secure docks. Although the use of the dock remains at the discretion of the bench, it tends to be used routinely even for petty offences.
It is argued that the dock interferes with the rights of the accused, under Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights, to participate in his defence. The dock has been abolished in youth courts partly for this reason. Meanwhile in adult courts, secure docks with floor-to-ceiling transparent screens tend to isolate the defendant from proceedings.
It is also argued that the dock interferes with the presumption of innocence - it may make the accused both look guilty and feel guilty. In the 1960s and 70s both the Law Society and Howard League for Penal Reform campaigned for the general presumption that defendants be allowed to sit in proximity to their advocates, unless there was a high risk of violence or escape. These campaigns were opposed by the Bar Council - the interests of barristers were under attack on a number of fronts at the time.
Docks are used in most European countries, but not in Holland or Denmark. New Zealand is trialling removal of the dock from magistrates' courts. Australia's Capital Territory and most parts of the US lack docks. The sixth amendment to the US constitution guarantees a defendant's right to assistance from counsel, and a dock would be thought to interfere with this. To satisfy the presumption of innocence, required by the fifth amendment, it should not be apparent to the jury that the defendant has been in custody. However, covert restraint may be used, and in some states restraint methods may be controversial.
The author calls for evidence-based reform, concluding: "What is most important, given the emergence of a security discourse which is not always rooted in extensive evidence of risk, is that decisions about the fundamental rights of the accused are not taken by designers or security personnel at the Ministry of Justice, stymied because of squabbles about territorial boundaries or undermined because of the inconvenience caused to lawyers."
So it's a real concern and it's debated, but whether anything will actually happen …
Gabe