Protect our uniformed services!!
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Cuts! Cuts! Cuts!
Thats all we seem to hear and read these past few years, council cuts, nhs cuts and police cuts to name but a few. I’ve also noticed we seem to be hearing about a lot more assaults on our police officers that are frankly, in my opinion, going unpunished.
A female police officer responding to a domestic in the West Midlands has recently been attacked and had her hair pulled out of her scalp, the offender got a 12 week suspended sentence.
In Swindon a man who drank 20 pints then strangled an officer and bit another has walked free from court.
In another assault an officer had their teeth knocked out requiring £1200 worth of dental treatment, the offender got a suspended sentence.
I could go on for hours giving examples like this but I’ve decided to use my time more effectively and start this petition for tougher sentencing for offenders who choose to assault not only our police officers who are there to protect us but all other uniformed services. Why should our nurses, doctors, paramedics and fire fighters who go to work to help us have to suffer any sort of abuse? And then if they do, then surely they should know they can rely on our justice system to punish the offenders? Yet time and time again it just isn’t happening, breeding a culture of contempt not only for the law but for our brave uniformed services. Women and men who go to work every day to serve us, who have dealt with so much in the last year alone with several terror attacks and Grenfell tower inferno, not to mention the sites they see and deal with on a daily basis.
I think now it’s time we show our gratitude and we get behind them, let’s get this petition signed and let’s get these politicians discussing it in parliament and let’s make a change. Tougher sentencing for offenders or at the very least for them to be punished according to the sentencing in place already, suspended sentences and community service is an insult.
Below is a list of countries and the maximum sentences in numerical order, this is just for assaults on the police.
While the conviction rate of resisting charges is staggeringly low, defendants could serve up to a year jail sentence.
However, if an officer is injured during the course of the arrest (even if it is a minor injury), the charge could get bumped up to a Class C Felony with a sentence of up to 15 years. A Class C Felony does not require the need to prove intention to inflict harm. If an officer is seriously injured, the charge could be raised to a Class B Felony, with a maximum sentence of up to 25 years in prison.
Italy has had a torrid, prolonged history of political corruption and unrest. Acts of resistance and/or violence against police officials are considered a serious offense, most of the time resulting in felony sentences. While there are less gun-related deaths at the hands of police officers, officers are believed to be quick to use violence. Some cases can often result in light sentences, but Italian penal code dictates that the aggravated assault charge is punishable by a 3-10 year sentence, with no more than a 5 year sentence for acts deemed “unintentional.”
Punishment for Insult of a Representative of the Authority (Aticle 319) ranges between wage-adjusted fines and 120-180 hours of "compulsory works" to "a corrective labour for a term of six to twelve months." Use of Violence Against a Representative of the Authority (Articles 318) that is "endangering the lives or health" of the officer is punishable by a term of five to ten years; punishment for use of violence "not endangering the lives or health" of the officer, including "threats", still ranges from wage-adjusted fines to a term of up to five years. A more severe version is Encroachment on the Life of an Officer of a Law-enforcement Agency (Article 317) and is punishable with a term of twelve to twenty years, or by capital punishment or life imprisonment.
Articles 318 and 319 give police a lot of leverage during the arrests and citizens, and the consequences of altercations with the police are unforseen in day-to-day interractions. A known example of this abuse of power is the lemon incident, when Maxim Luzyanin, while participating in a Bolotnaya protest ("March of Millions"), allegedly a “mass riot”, threw a lemon at and reportedly chipped a tooth of an OMON officer in full riot gear (actual charges claim it to be a rock, but video evidence suggested otherwise). Luzyanin recieved 4.5 years in prison per article 318, Use of Violence Against a Representative of the Authority.
In Toronto, resisting arrest is predicated on the proof that the arrest was legal. If unlawful, Canadian law protects a citizen’s right to protect themselves using ‘reasonable’ means. What is, however, considered reasonable? In one landmark case, 24-year old Jarron Alexander was not convicted of resisting arrest, even after tearing off a board from a fence and swinging it at a pursuing officer. Ontario Superior Court Justice Alison Harvison Young ruled that because the search, which prompted Alexander’s escape, was unlawful that, “unarmed and faced with an armed police officer, Mr. Alexander acted in self-defence [sic]…[and] was legally justified in doing so.” If convicted, however, of assault on a police officer the maximum sentence is up to five years in prison.
According to the Islamic Penal Code of the Islamic Republic of Iran there is not a specific charge for assault on a police officer. For assault cases resulting in bodily damage, the defendant faces a sentence of 2 to 5 years, while crimes that do not result in damage result in a sentence of 3 months to 1 year. When injury is inflicted, Iranian law does account for punishment in the form of qisas (an “eye for an eye” retaliation) and/or diyya (financial retribution). The Penal Code does specify that “resisting police forces” is non-punishable if “there is a fear that their acts will cause death or injury or assault to [someone’s] honor or property.”
The charge for assaulting a police officer according to Israeli Penal Code is punishable by a range of 1 month to 5 years (depending on the intention) imprisonment. However, while this would uphold for Israeli citizens, East Jerusalem is home to over 300,000 Palestinians who do not receive equal treatment.
*for Israelis, Indeterminable for Palestinians.
Japan has been often been criticized for its strict penal system. While the country made reforms in 2006, skeptical eyes worldwide still believed the effort to be too light. According to an article on The Japan Times, people arrested for crimes are automatically believed to be guilty. In other words, they put complete trust in the arresting officer’s word. With the ‘guilty until proven innocent’ adage in place, citizens of Tokyo who engage in acts of violence against the police — provoked or not — can expect to serve a sentence, but, according to Japanese Penal Code, imprisonment cannot exceed 3 years.
In the UK, cases of resisting arrest/assaulting a police officer are assessed on the basis of both party’s conduct. Charges may be dropped if the officer’s actions are considered excessive. Since it is rare for a British police officer to carry a gun, the typical response to resisting is a moderate use of force, like a knee to the back before being hauled off and charged. If convicted, the maximum sentence is only 6 months.
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