“Cruelty is fed, not weakened, by tears”

So sayeth Publilius Syrus, Roman author:

Neighbour Adele Butterworth, 23, said: ‘I know there are other people besides those in the dock who should be feeling guiltyfor the way they treated Gemma.‘She just wanted to be accepted so badly that she would put up with anything and often she didn’t realise people were just taking the mick.

Gemma told me about this boyfriend she had who was in prison. I don’t think he even existed but she would tell me that she’d had to give money to him so they could set up a home together.

These so-called friends tattooed the words, “Simon STD X” on her wrist. She said it was her boyfriend’s name. She had no idea that STD [sexually transmitted disease] was an insult.’

Care in the community. This is the end result of that well-meaning, yet flawed policy.

You see, while they were setting in motion the cornerstones, others were ensuring that there’d be no ‘community’ into which to release them:

They were all arrested on the Tuesday after Daniel told a receptionist at the local social servicesthat he had been present at the killing.During the seven-week trial that ended on Thursday, the young defendants’ behaviour caused utter dismay to their expensively assembled legal teams.They changed their stories several times but finally the two couples – Jessica and Joe, and Chantelle and Daniel – decided Duncan was solely responsible, while he blamed Daniel.

Their inconsistencies were easily exposed under cross-examination. At one point, when cornered, Chantelle swore at a barrister while Joe who, in a police interview had casually referred to Gemma as ‘that thing’, claimed to have been too intoxicated to remember anything.

In the dock, they simply larked about – laughing, passing one another notes and betraying not the slightest hint of concern.

At one point, the judge, the Right Honourable Lady Justice Rafferty, was forced to separate them like schoolchildren and warn them that they would be sent to the cells if they continued to misbehave.

No doubt something they’d heard many, many times before. Empty threats.

Lady Justice Rafferty called the case, ‘a tragedy for six young people’– Gemma, and, ‘the five hapless, undirected, unsupported individuals in the dock’.It was an acknowledgment that of the defendants, only one, Duncan Edwards, had a parent present at the end of the trial. The others, it seemed, had been abandoned.

Just as Gemma was. She, at least, was abandoned only with the best of intentions.

7 comments for ““Cruelty is fed, not weakened, by tears”

  1. August 1, 2011 at 2:02 pm

    Typical judge, can’t help feeling sorry for the murdering vermin along with their victim:

    “Lady Justice Rafferty called the case, ‘a tragedy for six young people’ – Gemma, and, ‘the five hapless, undirected, unsupported individuals in the dock’.”

  2. Robert Edwards
    August 1, 2011 at 2:25 pm

    What a dreadful, depressing tale…

    • August 2, 2011 at 5:44 am

      Isn’t it though?

      Blogger Laban Tall at ‘UK Commentators’ has tons of them, and after a while, they all have a depressing familiarity…

  3. john in cheshire
    August 1, 2011 at 3:22 pm

    Aren’t these the type of ‘people’ who should be hanged? What on earth is the point in keeping them alive? In fact, they will probably be back on the streets in a few years’ time and picking up their worthless lives as though nothing has happened.

    • August 1, 2011 at 10:22 pm

      Type of thing I was going to say. 😉

      • August 2, 2011 at 3:05 pm

        Hanging is rather permanent – perhaps we need a new Australia… We should open the moon/mars up for colonisation and ship our undesirables over there.

        Or perhaps it would be cheaper, given the numbers involved, for those of us with any sense of moral decency to just go there ourselves. 😐

        • Paul
          August 6, 2011 at 4:44 pm

          Rational Anarchist: Hanging is rather permanent – perhaps we need a new Australia… We should open the moon/mars up for colonisation and ship our undesirables over there.

          You know, I think I’ve got a near-perfect idea: one of the islands in South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands? Only problem is the penguins…

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