The Magistrate's Blog (2005-2012)

This blog has migrated to www.magistratesblog.blogspot.co.uk This blog is anonymous, and Bystander's views are his and his alone. Where his views differ from the letter of the law, he will enforce the letter of the law because that is what he has sworn to do. If you think that you can identify a particular case from one of the posts you are wrong. Enough facts are changed to preserve the truth of the tale but to disguise its exact source.

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Location: Near London, United Kingdom

The blog is written by a retired JP, with over 30 years' experience on the Bench.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Now Let's Be Really Frank

First the disclaimer:- I have never used illegal drugs (nor have I smoked a single cigarette)and I enforce laws made by Parliament, even when they make me feel personally uncomfortable.
And yet......
I was told recently that one of the questions asked of aspiring magistrates in a particular area revolved around how they would deal with finding that one of their children was using soft (class C) drugs. I was genuinely shocked to hear that in that place and at that time those who did not say that they would involve the police were crossed off the list.
If that had been the case twenty-odd years ago you would not be reading this now. I don't want to get all pompous about this, but my children (both of whom are now mature and successful adults) would never have been shopped to the great flat feet of the legal system by their father, because drugs would have been a problem that I, as a father should have dealt with. The law had no part to play and nothing to add. Mercifully, in my case, the problem did not arise.
Would you, as a citizen, or as a JP (and I know that a lot of colleagues read this blog) report your own child to the police for a Class C drug offence?
There's a poll on the sidebar. (Later - I have taken down the poll. It attracted over 550 replies and the overwhelming majority of people opted to deral with the matter within the family - as would I),