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, March 16, 2012

Heavy Matters

I chaired a remand court the other day and among the cases not on our printed list was a man charged with murder. The lower court has very little to do in a murder case, other than to identify the accused, and remand him to a Crown Court in the next few days. We have long lost the power to consider bail.
These hearings are swift and lack any real judicial input from us. The man looked awful though; he was in prison-issue grey sweatshirt and tracksuit bottoms, and seemed to be in a mild state of shock, which is not surprising when you consider that as a man in middle age he is unlikely, if convicted, to regain his freedom before he becomes a pensioner. Murder is a uniquely awful crime, but the consequences for the perpetrator are awful too.