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Punishment and Society - Essay Example

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PUNISHMENT AND SOCIETY Date Outline Abstract Case of Jack Martin VS Lord Master Man Case of Beth Williams Case of Mo Harris Conclusion Abstract It is a widely belief among sociolegal scholars that criminal and civil sanctions are developed and shaped by the prevailing social conditions in a society (Randall, 2007, p…
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Download file to see previous pages 108). According to Wendy (2005, p. 108), these authors vary in their focus on particular elements, there is a general agreement that the nature of punishment changes through the historical transition from primitive or early tribal law to the development of modern legal systems. Early tribal law is also called primitive legal systems is linked to small homogeneous and undifferentiated societies. This paper will assume a period in mid 19th century (1840s- 1860s) and look into how matters of theft, infanticide and rioting would be dealt with as at that time based on evidence from similar cases handled during this period. It is worthwhile to note that the period quoted in this question refers to a time in which the children and adults were treated the same in judgment (Centre on Juvenile and Criminal Justice 2006, p. 6). Case of Jack Martin VS Lord Master Man In this case Jack Martin, a 10 year-old boy is convicted of the theft of two rabbits from Lord Master Man's land. According to law in the 19th century this case would have counted as Petty Larceny especially if the value of the rabbits did not exceed a shilling. Also, it might be expected that the value of rabbits would exceed one shilling and in that occasion, this case would be counted as Grand Larceny. Either way, Jack would have a case to answer especially if evidence is sufficient. However, based on the case of Cooper Vs Walker, 1851, another consideration may arise. This case of Cooper Vs Walker relates to a market gardener of Beeston, Robert Cooper, an agricultural laborer John Walker and the theft of some onions. The census statistics of 1851 for Girt-ford near Sandy shows John Walker then a boy of 10 years old living with his parents William and Mary. John was the youngest of the four children, Thomas (15) Daniel (13) and Sarah (12). Records shows John to had been laborer at this age opposed to what would have been expected of him being a pupil. In 1861 however John had been accused of assault but was released after two months of imprisonment. He seems to have been set fair for a life of crime and indeed between September 1861 and March 1874 he had 14 convictions for petty offences (Victorian Crime and Punishment 2006, p. 18) There was noticeable difference however between Robert Cooper and John's family. The census statistics of 1871 for Beeston, also near Sandy, shows Robert to have been a young man of 27 years living with his 24 year old wife, Elizabeth and their three young children John (4), Charles (3) and Maud, a year old. The Coopers were rich enough to employ a living-in servant Jane Martin. They had wealth generated from their market gardening activities which were plasticized on a piece of 43 acres of land. On 13th September 1873 it is reported that as Cooper was sitting near the hedge bordering one of his fields where there were heaps of onions lying in the field, he watched as John Walker who, until the previous day had worked for him pick onions from these heaps. Walker picked about a peck from every heap and then smoothened out the heap so as to conceal the disturbance. He then used a sack to carry the stolen onions. This ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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