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lighter sentence because the lady was fat

do you agree with this ruling


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tacomancer

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Yes, I don't think he should be in prison. He caused the accident but I didn't see a reference in the article to overtly reckless driving and he otherwise did everything he could to save her. He had a car accident, yes, but it really wasn't his fault that she was too fat to be transported by the nearest available rescue vehicles. From the article:

Her weight was so great that both the ambulance and the air ambulance called to the scene were unable to transfer her to hospital, and eventually a helicopter from RAF Kinloss took her to Ninewells Hospital in Dundee.

This is one of those tragic things that happens in life. He didn't really get a lighter sentence because she was fat, he's being punished for the car crash but not for her death because the paramedics were unable to get her to the hospital quickly enough because of her heft.
 
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Your Star

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No I don't agree with this. While it seems like there was no wrong doing, and this was just a horrible accident, I don't think that the victims weight, causing her inability to be transported to receive the medical treatment she needed should effect the sentencing of the guilty party. It would be like saying someone should receive a lesser sentence because they murdered a terminally ill patient, who was going to die soon anyway.
 

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No I don't agree with this. While it seems like there was no wrong doing, and this was just a horrible accident, I don't think that the victims weight, causing her inability to be transported to receive the medical treatment she needed should effect the sentencing of the guilty party. It would be like saying someone should receive a lesser sentence because they murdered a terminally ill patient, who was going to die soon anyway.

I don't think that's analogous because murder is specifically done with the intent to kill. That the victim was terminally ill is beside the point. This woman died due to circumstances beyond anyone's control (although he did cause the accident, it was an accident and not a purposeful killing).
 
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spud_meister

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:shock: 180 kilos, you'd think she could absorb the shock with all that extra padding.
 

Kandahar

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Yes, the ruling is correct IMO. I don't know much about the laws of Scotland, but I suspect that most courts here in the US would rule the same way. If you like, replace the fact that she was morbidly obese with some other frailty that is less emotionally charged. Would it be fair to charge someone with manslaughter (or whatever the applicable death-related crime would be) if they could not have reasonably expected that their actions would kill someone? I don't think so.
 
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OscarB63

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what the hell is "driving carelessly". was he talking on a cell phone? changing the radio? just not paying attention? the story doesn't say. If he wasn't drinking and he caused the "accident" due to being momentarily distracted I don't see why he should've been charged at all. Accidents happen....that's why they are called accidents. It's not his fault she was so fat they couldn't get her into an ambulance.
 

liblady

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Yes, the ruling is correct IMO. I don't know much about the laws of Scotland, but I suspect that most courts here in the US would rule the same way. If you like, replace the fact that she was morbidly obese with some other frailty that is less emotionally charged. Would it be fair to charge someone with manslaughter (or whatever the applicable death-related crime would be) if they could not have reasonably expected that their actions would kill someone? I don't think so.

the question is, would he have been charged with something else had she been "normal" and died anyway. if so, then he should have been charged in this case. if not, then the ruling is appropriate. we have to take the "obese" factor completely out of the equation.
 

OscarB63

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the question is, would he have been charged with something else had she been "normal" and died anyway. .

according to the article, if she had been "normal" she probably would not have died. her immense fatness not only contributed to the severity of her injuries, it prevented her from being transported to a hospital in a timely manner. therefore, if she had been of normal weight/girth not only would she have not been as severely injured, it would not have taken them 4 hours to get her to hospital.
 

liblady

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according to the article, if she had been "normal" she probably would not have died. her immense fatness not only contributed to the severity of her injuries, it prevented her from being transported to a hospital in a timely manner. therefore, if she had been of normal weight/girth not only would she have not been as severely injured, it would not have taken them 4 hours to get her to hospital.

probably does NOT count. if a man ran someone over and they died, what would he be charged with? that's the question, and that's the only fair way to look at this.
 

MaggieD

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In US courts, criminals must "take people as they find them." Someone guilty of negligent homicide could not, for example, say, "Well, if she hadn't been 80 years old, she'd have survived."

But in this case, I'm reading between the lines and assuming that her injuries were likely not fatal. She died of her injuries only because it took four hours to get her in-hospital medical care. 29 stone is the equivalent of 406 pounds. (Actually, it's hard to believe they couldn't transport her in an ambulance.

He was fined the equivalent of $8,000. What purpose would it serve if he was incarcerated? Here in the States, that finding would then translate to next-of-kin being able to file a civil suit -- and win.

Justice served.
 

liblady

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In US courts, criminals must "take people as they find them." Someone guilty of negligent homicide could not, for example, say, "Well, if she hadn't been 80 years old, she'd have survived."

But in this case, I'm reading between the lines and assuming that her injuries were likely not fatal. She died of her injuries only because it took four hours to get her in-hospital medical care. 29 stone is the equivalent of 406 pounds. (Actually, it's hard to believe they couldn't transport her in an ambulance.

He was fined the equivalent of $8,000. What purpose would it serve if he was incarcerated? Here in the States, that finding would then translate to next-of-kin being able to file a civil suit -- and win.

Justice served.

as i said, it doesn't matter. had he not hit her, she would not have died. he should be charged as such.
 

MaggieD

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as i said, it doesn't matter. had he not hit her, she would not have died. he should be charged as such.

He was charged as such. And he was found guilty. We're discussing punishment here, not whether or not he was convicted.
 
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liblady

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He was charged as such. And he was found guilty. We're discussing punishment here, not whether or not he was convicted.

and my point is that he should receive the same punishment as anyone else who killed a person. if he struck an old lady with a bad heart would you say the same thing?
 

OscarB63

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probably does NOT count. if a man ran someone over and they died, what would he be charged with? that's the question, and that's the only fair way to look at this.

it would depend on the circumstances surrounding how/why he ran them over. in this case...everyone involved said it was an....wait for it.........accident. she died because it took them 4 hours to get her to hospital. it took them 4 hours to get her to hospital because she was too damn fat to fit in a normal ambulance or helo.
 

jamesrage

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I say no. The victim's weight is irrelevant to the fact someone crashed into her due to negligence. Because as liblady said the same argument for a reduction in sentence could be made if the victim was old, a female a child or some other excuse they could find to reduce the sentence. Unless they are using mini-coopers or some other Euro-trash clown car as ambulances it should not be that hard to fit a four hundred pound woman in that thing. Giving the offender a lesser sentence because the victim was fact is like saying the rapist should get a lesser sentence because the victim dressed like a slut or did not fight off her attacker.
 
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MaggieD

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and my point is that he should receive the same punishment as anyone else who killed a person. if he struck an old lady with a bad heart would you say the same thing?

Not sure how it is in Scotland, but in the U.S., we have sentencing guidelines....a minimum to a maximum depending upon extenuating circumstances. There is no "same sentence as anyone else." All circumstances are different -- within guidelines.

Example of sentencing guidelines from Wisconsin:

For a Class F Felony, the penalty is a fine of up to $25,000, or imprisonment of up to 12-1/2 years, or both; however, for a repeat offender, the term of imprisonment may increase up to 2 years with prior misdemeanor convictions, and up to 6 years with a prior felony conviction.
 
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liblady

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Not sure how it is in Scotland, but in the U.S., we have sentencing guidelines....a minimum to a maximum depending upon extenuating circumstances. There is no "same sentence as anyone else." All circumstances are different -- within guidelines.

i don't think a lighter sentence was warranted. had the victim been an infant would you think the same way?
 

MaggieD

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i don't think a lighter sentence was warranted. had the victim been an infant would you think the same way?

Oh, for God's sake. Do you even know what the guidelines are in Scotland? Do you even know what he was charged with? Do you even know what the minimum/maximum penalties were? Do you not find it meaningful that emergency services needs to take some responsibility for her death since they could not transport her? Do you like to disagree with me, just because?
 

OscarB63

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i don't think a lighter sentence was warranted. had the victim been an infant would you think the same way?

had the victim been an infant, properly restained in a carseat, it wouldn't have been killed.

coulda, shoulda, woulda......the guy was charged and, just like everyone else, extenuating circumstances were taken into account during his sentencing.

he was treated like everyone else who is involved in a car crash where someone dies.

what????? do you want him to spend the rest of his life in prison for murder? would that make you "happy"?
 

liblady

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had the victim been an infant, properly restained in a carseat, it wouldn't have been killed.

coulda, shoulda, woulda......the guy was charged and, just like everyone else, extenuating circumstances were taken into account during his sentencing.

he was treated like everyone else who is involved in a car crash where someone dies.

what????? do you want him to spend the rest of his life in prison for murder? would that make you "happy"?

we have no way of knowing that. again, what if the victim was a frail old lady?

and i never said he should spend the rest of his life in prison, just that he should get the same puishment as anyone else who accidently kills someone with their car. the victim's obesity is beside the point.
 

MaggieD

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we have no way of knowing that. again, what if the victim was a frail old lady?

and i never said he should spend the rest of his life in prison, just that he should get the same puishment as anyone else who accidently kills someone with their car. the victim's obesity is beside the point.

And why are you assuming that he didn't???
 

Kandahar

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we have no way of knowing that. again, what if the victim was a frail old lady?

and i never said he should spend the rest of his life in prison, just that he should get the same puishment as anyone else who accidently kills someone with their car. the victim's obesity is beside the point.

OK, how about this scenario: A guy accidentally rear-ends someone at a traffic light, causing a minor neck injury. Just to be safe, the victim calls an ambulance to go to the hospital...and on the way there, the ambulance is hit by a train, killing her. Should the guy who rear-ended her be charged with her death, just because his accident indirectly led to her death? No, of course not. At most, he should be charged with causing a minor neck injury. Same logic applies in THIS case. It wasn't his initial action that caused her death, it was a result of the subsequent rescue effort, which was entirely out of his control.
 
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liblady

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OK, how about this scenario: A guy accidentally rear-ends someone at a traffic light, causing a minor neck injury. Just to be safe, the victim calls an ambulance to go to the hospital...and on the way there, the ambulance is hit by a train, killing her. Should the guy who rear-ended her be charged with her death, just because his accident indirectly led to her death? No, of course not. At most, he should be charged with causing a minor neck injury. Same logic applies in THIS case. It wasn't his initial action that caused her death, it was a result of the rescue squad.

no, it does not. you could argue the same thing if a person was hit by a car, thought they were okay, didn't see a doctor and later died of internal injuries. the person driving the car would still be culpable, as he caused the injury in the first place.
 
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