It is the specific crime, not the fact that it is a second or third felony, 300-320 Practice Test Questions which is injurious. Neither a community nor an individual suffer more from the commission of a crime by a man who commits it for the second time than from its commission by a man who has never committed it before.300-320 Practice Test Questions If two brothers are each robbed of a pound apiece on two several occasions, 300-320 Practice Test Questions 300-320 Practice Test Questions the one who is robbed each time by the same criminal suffers no more than the one who is robbed each time by different criminals.300-320 Practice Test Questions Still less is the public more injured in one case than in the other. 300-320 Practice Test Questions Therefore the former brother is entitled for his second loss to no more restitution than the other, 300-320 Practice Test Questions nor has any more claim on society for the infliction of a severer punishment on his behalf than that inflicted for the second loss of his brother.
A few stories may be taken as illustrative of thousands to indicate the mischief and travesty of justice which arises from the neglect of this principle, 300-320 Practice Test Questions and from the custom of making a legal inquiry into moral antecedents.
A farm labourer, with a wife and four children, and earning eleven shillings a week, 300-320 Practice Test Questions was imprisoned in the county gaol for two months for the theft of a pound of butter. Soon after his release sickness entered his home,300-320 Practice Test Questions and to supply his children’s wants he again yielded to temptation and stole twelve duck’s eggs. 300-320 Practice Test Questions For this he was sentenced to seven years’ penal servitude; 300-320 Practice Test Questions or rather not for this theft, but because he had already incurred a severe punishment for a theft of some butter. 300-320 Practice Test Questions The sentence was most perfectly lawful, but was it not perfectly unjust?
Almost any number of the ‘Times’ will illustrate the same thing.300-320 Practice Test Questions Take the account of the Middlesex Sessions of February 24, 1880. There we find the case of a man and woman sentenced to seven and five years’ penal servitude respectively. 300-320 Practice Test Questions What enormities had they committed?300-320 Practice Test Questions The man had stolen three-halfpence from somebody; and the woman, who was a laundress, had stolen two skirts, of the value of six shillings,300-320 Practice Test Questions from a vendor of sheep’s trotters. The man had incurred previously seven years’ penal servitude for a robbery with violence, and the woman had three times in her life been sentenced to imprisonment. 300-320 Practice Test Questions But is it just that, because a man has been severely punished once, 300-320 Practice Test Questions no rule nor measure shall be observed with him if he incur punishment again? 300-320 Practice Test Questions And might not a vendor of sheep’s trotters have been satisfied, without a laundress becoming a burden to the State?
It will be said, of course, that the practice of giving increased sentences where there have been previous convictions prevails all over the world and in all states of civilisation. 300-320 Practice Test Questions But in that very fact lies the strength of the argument against it. By the Roman law a third case of theft, however slight, 300-320 Practice Test Questions exposed a man to death. By the laws of St. 300-320 Practice Test Questions Louis the man who stole a thing of trifling value lost an ear the first time, a foot the second,300-320 Practice Test Questions and was hung the third. By the criminal code of Sardinia in the fifteenth century, 300-320 Practice Test Questions asses were condemned to lose one ear the first time they trespassed on a field not their master’s, and their second ear for a second offence. But enough of such instances. 300-320 Practice Test Questions The practice is undoubtedly universal; but so at one time were ordeals and tortures. 300-320 Practice Test Questions May not, then, the practice be, like them, part and parcel of a crude state of law, such as was unavoidable in its emergence to better things, 300-320 Practice Test Questions but such as it is worth some effort to escape from?
There are, however, certain limitations even to the supposed universality of the custom.300-320 Practice Test Questions For the Roman jurists did not consider a re-conviction as a circumstance in itself which justified aggravation of punishment; 300-320 Practice Test Questions and all that can be gathered from some fragments in the Pandects and Code is, that some particular cases of repeated crimes were punished more severely than a first offence. 300-320 Practice Test Questions But they were crimes of the same kind; and a man whose first crime was a theft and whose second was an assault would not have incurred an aggravated penalty. 300-320 Practice Test Questions It is the same to-day in the Austrian, 300-320 Practice Test Questions Tuscan, and a few other codes: 300-320 Practice Test Questions a second crime is only punished more severely as a second crime when it is of the same kind as the first, so that it would not suffice to prove simply a previous conviction for felony irrespective of the particular sort.300-320 Practice Test Questions There is also another limitation that has sometimes been recognised, for in the Roman law the rule of an increased penalty fell to the ground, 300-320 Practice Test Questions if three years elapsed without offence between the punishment for one crime and the commission of a second.