Get involved! Send your photos, video, news & views by texting HT NEWS to 80360 or e-mail us
Burglary: Will the new law do more harm than good?
FOLLOWING the recent announcement by justice secretary Chris Grayling that homeowners will soon be protected if they use ‘disproportionate’ force when confronted by burglars, I couldn’t decide whether this was a good or bad thing.
Over the years many people have been jailed for harming, or killing, an intruder in their home - Tony Martin, a farmer in Norfolk, shot dead an intruder in his home in 1999 and was jailed for life for murder, though this sentence was reduced following appeal.
In this case, it seems to be a small step for common sense. Besides, many people would do anything to protect their family and who knows how they would react when confronted with a person, possibly armed, in the middle of the night?
However, some burglars will be young people who may have been pressured in to doing it ‘for a laugh’, or drunk or on drugs at the time, thinking they’re invincible until their life is cut short by one stupid decision.
And maybe sometimes it’s better to hide, or let the burglars take what they want rather than getting in to a confrontation which could equally end up in you or your family being the ones who are injured or killed.
It’s not just central government getting tougher on burglars - West Mercia Police’s new initiative, Citadel, aims to ensure no more than 10 burglaries a day are committed across Herefordshire, Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin and Worcestershire.
So, is using ‘disproportionate’ force a good idea when it comes to an intruder in the home, or will this lead to more trouble in the long run?
Post your opinions below.