After a case last month where a Judge indulged in verbal gymnastics to avoid giving the mandatory sentence of life in prison without parole (LWOP) to a second strike murderer, today saw a District Court Judge seeming to apologise for sentencing a man who ran over his partner to almost four years without parole – as required by the three strikes law for a second “strike’ offence.“We have noticed that female Judges at both District and High Court level seem to struggle with a simple law that a farmer like me finds very easy to understand” said Sensible Sentencing founder Garth McVicar.
“Here is a 43 year old man convicted of a second “strike” offence only months after receiving a non-custodial sentence for his first” McVicar said.
“One would have thought the Judge’s sympathies would have been with Nathan Kenneth Boniface’s female victim rather than with an offender who is exactly the kind of person the three strikes law was intended to target” McVicar said.
“Boniface was treated leniently at strike one by being given a ‘community detention’ sentence for wounding with reckless disregard. He showed his contempt for that leniency by committing arguably a worse offence – running over a woman with a car – just months later” said McVicar.
“If media reports are correct, Judge Jane Farish said nothing about Boniface’s victims, but rather expressed concern about what would happen to him on his release from his sentence – imprisonment for 46 months for both the first and second strike offences.”
“When are Judges going to ‘get’ that offenders like Boniface have a choice about whether they go to jail or not? No-one is going to make this guy commit another offence when he is released. That’s entirely up to him” McVicar said.
“In the meantime, this thug is exactly where he needs to be – behind bars for almost four years, during which time innocent members of the public don’t have to worry about him.”
The judiciary are still deliberately blocking the the intent of the Three Strikes law.
And while we’re at it, perhaps we should start looking at dropping concurrent sentences for Three Strikes offenses. You really can just go around and do serious damage, even take lives, and the justice system happily gives you discount.