This is not manslaughter - This is the deliberate murder of a person


Goober
#1
The problems with our legal % justice system are clearly demonstrated in this case.

How you can drive, pin a person against a tree resulting in their death and call this manslaughter.

Four more years for man convicted in 2007 death of York officer | Posted Toronto | National Post

Newmarket, Ont. • The Toronto man convicted in the 2007 death of a York Regional Police Officer received a 12-year sentence in a Newmarket court on Wednesday.

The Honourable Michelle Fuerst of the Superior Court of Justice, awarded Nadeem Jiwa two-for-one credit for the time he has previously served in pre-trial custody, which means the now 23-year-old will serve another four years and two months in jail.

A jury found Jiwa guilty of manslaughter April 28, after he pinned Detective Constable Robert Plunkett against a tree with the stolen Honda Accord he was driving, severing the 42-year-old officer’s aorta. He was acquitted of the more serious charge of first-degree murder.

As the judge read the sentence before a courtroom packed with Det. Const. Plunkett’s friends, family and fellow officers, Sonja Plunkett and her daughter Amanda maintained their composure as they glanced at each other and nodded.

On the other side of the courtroom, Izaat Jiwa, mother of the accused, burst into tears. Jiwa, who was wearing a grey sweater over a white collared shirt, turned and nodded at his mother.

Outside the court, Ms. Plunkett expressed relief that her family had received some closure after a “very long and unimaginable journey.” One that could easily have been avoided if Jiwa had listened to police commands the night of Aug. 2, 2007, she said.

“[Police] do an honourable, difficult, and selfless job,” she said. “That is what my husband Rob Plunkett was all about.”

Police Chief Eric Joliffe joined Ms. Plunkett outside court and spoke of the long ordeal that both the Plunkett family and the York Regional Police Force has had to endure over the past four years.

“I’m pleased to see that Nadeem Jiwa has received the sentence he was given,” he said.

The maximum possible sentence for manslaughter is life in prison, but there is no required minimum sentence.

The defence had requested a sentence of between five and seven years. The Crown argued that although Jiwa was convicted of manslaughter, he deserved a harsher sentence, in the range of 12 to 14 years.

Judge Fuerst said she took into account the victim-impact statements submitted by the Plunkett family and she found the following statement from Sonja’s submission, particularly poignant: “It took me over a year to have Rob’s cell phone disconnected. I called it several times a day and would wait for it to go to his voicemail,” she said in court last week. “I was afraid that I would forget what his voice sounded like.”

However, Judge Fuerst reminded the court that she cannot be “governed by emotions,” and that her sentence is “not intended as a measure of Plunkett’s life, or the impact of his death on the family.”

She said that while Jiwa grew up in a “loving, supportive environment,” in August 2007 he showed disrespect for his family and a “flagrant disregard,” for the 1 a.m. curfew his mother had set as his surety for bail.

Under recommendation from the Crown, Judge Fuerst determined beyond reasonable doubt that Jiwa knew that the plainclothes officers who had surrounded him as he attempted to remove the airbag from the stolen vehicle he had been driving, were police. She found it highly unlikely that Det. Const. Plunkett, a 22-year-veteran of the force, would fail to identify himself before making an arrest, and that other officers’ testimony supported this. That Jiwa failed to come to Det. Const. Plunkett’s aid when he was injured, instead attempting to flee on foot, stopping only when he realized he was surrounded, further suggests that he was attempting to resist arrest, she said.

Judge Fuerst said that her determination that Jiwa drove the vehicle in an effort to resist arrest, resulting in the death of a police officer acting in the course of his job, “seriously aggravated the sentence.”

As they left the Newmarket courtroom, the Jiwa family said they do not wish to comment on the sentencing. Jiwa’s lawyer, Lawrence Cohen, said he will be discussing the next course of action with his client.

“He was somewhat shocked at the lengthy sentence,” Mr. Cohen said, “but he’s OK.”

The sentencing comes the day after another York Regional Police officer, 32-year-old father of two Const. Garrett Styles, was killed in a traffic stop; the homicide squad is leading the investigation into his death.

Outside court, Ms. Plunkett acknowledged the eerily similar circumstances under which both police officers died.

“My attention is now turning to the Styles family and all members of the York Regional Police at this most difficult time,” she said. “My family extends their deepest condolences. Another journey is just begun.”

Jiwa also received a lifetime weapons prohibition, will be prohibited from operating a motor vehicle for 10 years and was ordered to provide a mandatory DNA sample.
 
lone wolf
+3
#2  Top Rated Post
I think it's time to recognize the automobile as a weapon where somewhat less than accidental death is involved - including impaired. The way things stand now, if you want to kill someone, use a car.
 
SLM
#3
Why was it manslaughter? What happened to second degree murder? I thought that was the standard charge when a death occurs during the commission of a crime, no?

I can see I guess why no first degree murder charge, I think that requires the ability to prove the plan to murder. Malice of forethought, or some such.
 
lone wolf
#4
Apparently, the 15 year old who killed Const Styles will be charged with murder

CTV Ottawa- 15-year-old charged with murder in officer's death - CTV News

Big deal.... He's YO. Makes little difference to him unless he's tried as an adult.
 
shadowshiv
#5
Quote: Originally Posted by lone wolf View Post

Apparently, the 15 year old who killed Const Styles will be charged with murder

CTV Ottawa- 15-year-old charged with murder in officer's death - CTV News

Big deal.... He's YO. Makes little difference to him unless he's tried as an adult.

Under the current system of "justice", he'll be out in 7 years. Nice.
 
Cliffy
#6
Quote: Originally Posted by shadowshiv View Post

Under the current system of "justice", he'll be out in 7 years. Nice.

7 years is long enough to earn him a colostomy bag.
 
shadowshiv
#7
Quote: Originally Posted by Cliffy View Post

7 years is long enough to earn him a colostomy bag.

The person I was talking about was the 15 year old that was mentioned in the post of lone wolf's that I quoted. Due to his age, the maximum that he can get under the current YJA is 7 years in prison. Therefore, he will be out by the time he is 22 years old(and more than likely he will be out before that). That doesn't seem like justice, in either of the two cases.
 
JLM
#8
Quote: Originally Posted by SLM View Post

Why was it manslaughter? What happened to second degree murder? I thought that was the standard charge when a death occurs during the commission of a crime, no?

I can see I guess why no first degree murder charge, I think that requires the ability to prove the plan to murder. Malice of forethought, or some such.

What's happenin' nowadays and the criminals know it is the courts are so back logged and the money to prosecute is in short supply, so deals are being cut to move things through the system. I think it's a good thing with first time offenders being charged with minor crimes, but trying to save time and money putting bad guys back on the streets will cost more in the long run.
 
WLDB
#9
Quote: Originally Posted by Goober View Post

The problems with our legal % justice system are clearly demonstrated in this case.

How you can drive, pin a person against a tree resulting in their death and call this manslaughter.

No mens rea, which is required for a murder charge.
 
JLM
+1
#10
Quote: Originally Posted by WLDB View Post

No mens rea, which is required for a murder charge.

I don't speak Latin (Very few others do too)

Quote: Originally Posted by shadowshiv View Post

The person I was talking about was the 15 year old that was mentioned in the post of lone wolf's that I quoted. Due to his age, the maximum that he can get under the current YJA is 7 years in prison. Therefore, he will be out by the time he is 22 years old(and more than likely he will be out before that). That doesn't seem like justice, in either of the two cases.

One reason to maintain a gallows (or our version of Ol' Sparky) is for little bastards like that. There is no doubt he is the culprit, so there is no danger of expunging the wrong person. All that would be left to argue is the seriousness of the crime, but I'm sure his widow and daughter could give an accurate evaluation of that.
 
Praxius
#11
Just to be a devil's advocate here.... in order to find someone guilty of 1st degree, you have to prove intent to kill.... all evidence shows he was trying to evade arrest, not to purposely kill any of the officers.

And the fact that the officer's family and friends have accepted the sentence and have had closure over the whole ordeal, that should be the end of it, because as I see it, what really matters is if the victims or the victim's family are satisfied and get their closure over the crime. If they feel justice was served, then let it be and move on.
 
WLDB
#12
Quote: Originally Posted by JLM View Post

I don't speak Latin (Very few others do too)



One reason to maintain a gallows (or our version of Ol' Sparky) is for little bastards like that.

Then we can join countries like Iran and China who execute children.
 
JLM
#13
Quote: Originally Posted by WLDB View Post

Then we can join countries like Iran and China who execute children.

If you want to count 15 as "children"- he was old enough to drive a vehicle, so he should be old enough to take responsibility.
 
WLDB
#14
Quote: Originally Posted by JLM View Post

If you want to count 15 as "children"- he was old enough to drive a vehicle, so he should be old enough to take responsibility.

Actually he'd have to be 16 to be able to legally drive in Ontario and it would be at least a year after that before he could drive alone. The law considers minors to be children.

If we are to start charging people in this age group as adults, fine, but be consistent. Give them all of the benefits that come with being an adult, the right to vote, allow them to drink, give them fair wages when they work etc.
 
JLM
#15
Quote: Originally Posted by WLDB View Post

Actually he'd have to be 16 to be able to legally drive in Ontario and it would be at least a year after that before he could drive alone. The law considers minors to be children.

If we are to start charging people in this age group as adults, fine, but be consistent. Give them all of the benefits that come with being an adult, the right to vote, allow them to drink, give them fair wages when they work etc.

Those are good points for another thread, and I agree with much of what you say, but there we would be dealing with legality on all issues. This little bugger decided he wasn't going the legal route, so should we be embarking on a legal track when it suits him? I think NOT.
 
lone wolf
#16
I wonder where they got the van?
 
JLM
#17
Quote: Originally Posted by lone wolf View Post

I wonder where they got the van?

I'm not sure it matters (except to the guy it was possibly stolen from)
 
Goober
+1
#18
Quote: Originally Posted by Praxius View Post

Just to be a devil's advocate here.... in order to find someone guilty of 1st degree, you have to prove intent to kill.... all evidence shows he was trying to evade arrest, not to purposely kill any of the officers.

And the fact that the officer's family and friends have accepted the sentence and have had closure over the whole ordeal, that should be the end of it, because as I see it, what really matters is if the victims or the victim's family are satisfied and get their closure over the crime. If they feel justice was served, then let it be and move on.

That in itself is the root of the problem. If when committing a crime someone dies it should be murder. Just because it was not planned does not detract from the facts that it happened. Oh my, it was an accident. Really.

To look upon what happened here and state - prove intent - well consider the probability of serious injury or death. Impossible to prove. Then the law should be amended as such.

He had a Police Officer trapped, kept on driving, the van rolled due to the struggle. The Officer died. He had proved intent to harm or injure by continuing to drive. That in itself is overlooked in your point.

As to what the family expected to receive as so called closure. a term that is not fact as closure, fully closure never happens, perhaps then family impact statements would be considered when sentencing. They are not allowed in Canadian Law. Again a point over looked. Consider the family was well briefed on what could be expected.

Lastly bring what the family expects as reasonable, perhaps Sharia Law where the family can demand the death penalty. We live in a multi cultural society - so that depending upon the ethnicity is a reasonable point to bring forward.
 
WLDB
#19
Quote: Originally Posted by Goober View Post


As to what the family expected to receive as so called closure. a term that is not fact as closure, fully closure never happens, perhaps then family impact statements would be considered when sentencing. They are not allowed in Canadian Law. Again a point over looked. Consider the family was well briefed on what could be expected.

Lastly bring what the family expects as reasonable, perhaps Sharia Law where the family can demand the death penalty. We live in a multi cultural society - so that depending upon the ethnicity is a reasonable point to bring forward.

In criminal cases it is the Crown against a suspect, not the family of a victim. The family can pursue a civil case if they wish to, though they likely won't gain anything from it. If we tailor sentences to what the victim's family wants on every crime we can end up with very different and unfair treatments of criminals who have committed the same crime. One person may go free while another is executed, fortunately the latter is not possible here. Crimes should remain impersonal and be considered crimes against the state, rather than be handed over to the individual and be a quest for revenge.

We may be multi-cultural but we have only one law. It should remain that way. The police officer likely believed the same thing, otherwise he wouldn't have taken a job upholding said laws.

Quote: Originally Posted by Goober View Post

That in itself is the root of the problem. If when committing a crime someone dies it should be murder. Just because it was not planned does not detract from the facts that it happened. Oh my, it was an accident. Really.

It is considered homicide whenever a person dies in an event regardless of the circumstances. It is the circumstances which determine whether or not it is murder, and then the type of murder.
 
CDNBear
#20
Quote: Originally Posted by WLDB View Post

In criminal cases it is the Crown against a suspect, not the family of a victim.

Actually, it's the 'public interest' against the defendant. The 'public interest' is represented by the Crown.
Quote:

Crimes should remain impersonal and be considered crimes against the state, rather than be handed over to the individual and be a quest for revenge.

Good luck with that. I have personally heard a Crown make personal emotional references in a Courtroom, that neither the Duty Counsel, nor the Judge challenged.

Quote:

It is considered homicide whenever a person dies in an event regardless of the circumstances. It is the circumstances which determine whether or not it is murder, and then the type of murder.

In this case, it was manslaughter. Intent, not circumstances makes all the difference. In the latest case, with the young offender, it will be the same ending, manslaughter. Because neither had intent.
Last edited by CDNBear; Jul 1st, 2011 at 08:52 AM..
 
WLDB
#21
Quote: Originally Posted by CDNBear View Post

Actually, it's the 'public interest' against the defendant. The 'public interest' is represented by the Crown.
Good luck with that. I have personally heard a Crown make personal emotional references in a Courtroom, that neither the Duty Counsel, nor the Judge challenged.

In this case, it was manslaughter. Intent, not circumstances makes all the difference. In the latest case, with the young offender, it will be the same ending, manslaughter. Because neither had intent.

Public Interest or the Crown, it is ultimately the same thing. It is society as a whole. Far better than the family being the one to prosecute.

Emotional arguments should have no place in a courtroom, or really anywhere where good arguments are taking place.

Also, is not intent one of the circumstances?
 
JLM
#22
Quote: Originally Posted by CDNBear View Post

Actually, it's the 'public interest' against the defendant. The 'public interest' is represented by the Crown.
Good luck with that. I have personally heard a Crown make personal emotional references in a Courtroom, that neither the Duty Counsel, nor the Judge challenged.

In this case, it was manslaughter. Intent, not circumstances makes all the difference. In the latest case, with the young offender, it will be the same ending, manslaughter. Because neither had intent.

Good points, Bear. The only argument I can put forth is "should a death occurring during the commission of a crime be treated as a homicide"?
 
CDNBear
+1
#23
Quote: Originally Posted by WLDB View Post

Public Interest or the Crown, it is ultimately the same thing.

No it isn't. They are two separate things.

Quote:

It is society as a whole.

No it isn't. That's mob rule.

Quote:

Far better than the family being the one to prosecute.

Agreed.
Quote:

Emotional arguments should have no place in a courtroom, or really anywhere where good arguments are taking place.

Agreed. But that doesn't mean it doesn't happen. How do you think the the laws that affect the public interest are dictated?

Quote:

Also, is not intent one of the circumstances?

No. The circumstances are the material facts. Intent is a mind set.

Quote: Originally Posted by JLM View Post

Good points, Bear. The only argument I can put forth is "should a death occurring during the commission of a crime be treated as a homicide"?

It was considered Homicide. But to what degree, is the question. Any death at the hands of another, is considered Homicide.

The question is, is it murder or manslaughter. Murder requires the intent to inflict.

In neither was that the intent. The defendants intent, was to flee. The result, the death of an Officer.

The case from 2007, involving an adult, though it could be reasonably believed that he should have known that the act of fleeing while an Officer was attempting to impede his escape could have resulted in serious bodily injury and/or death. Proving it, is a complete separate and most difficult task.
 
Goober
#24
Quote: Originally Posted by WLDB View Post

In criminal cases it is the Crown against a suspect, not the family of a victim. The family can pursue a civil case if they wish to, though they likely won't gain anything from it. If we tailor sentences to what the victim's family wants on every crime we can end up with very different and unfair treatments of criminals who have committed the same crime. One person may go free while another is executed, fortunately the latter is not possible here. Crimes should remain impersonal and be considered crimes against the state, rather than be handed over to the individual and be a quest for revenge.

We may be multi-cultural but we have only one law. It should remain that way. The police officer likely believed the same thing, otherwise he wouldn't have taken a job upholding said laws.



It is considered homicide whenever a person dies in an event regardless of the circumstances. It is the circumstances which determine whether or not it is murder, and then the type of murder.

I was not trying to rag on you. I thought about the post this morning. It is next to impossible to prove pre meditated murder. All this person has to state is i did not know, i was scared - i did not think - his lawyer has one major point to make - not that he is not guilty, but that there is a reasonable doubt he planned to commit murder. The law has to change. The judge imposed a sentence un the Crim Code that follows past precedents. Every time they lower a sentence, the precedent is then used in all courts as the basis for a sentence. They keep on lowering the penalty but the loss is still a persons life. That does not change

A lifetime weapons ban in this case should also include a vehicle - as that was the weapon of choice. And he did indeed make that choice.
 
WLDB
#25
Quote: Originally Posted by Goober View Post

I was not trying to rag on you. I thought about the post this morning. It is next to impossible to prove pre meditated murder. All this person has to state is i did not know, i was scared - i did not think - his lawyer has one major point to make - not that he is not guilty, but that there is a reasonable doubt he planned to commit murder. The law has to change. The judge imposed a sentence un the Crim Code that follows past precedents. Every time they lower a sentence, the precedent is then used in all courts as the basis for a sentence. They keep on lowering the penalty but the loss is still a persons life. That does not change

A lifetime weapons ban in this case should also include a vehicle - as that was the weapon of choice. And he did indeed make that choice.

It is possible to prove pre-meditated murder. People do get convicted of first degree murder here. Even those that lie and say they didnt know or didnt plan can and have been convicted. They have witnesses they can use who were in the vehicle.

Also, given he's 15 the "i did not know, i was scared - i did not think -" is entirely possible. Its well known that most people at that age don't think before doing stupid things as their brains aren't done being developed and won't be for at least another 5 years or so.
 
JLM
#26
[QUOTE=WLDB;Also, given he's 15 the "i did not know, i was scared - i did not think -" is entirely possible. Its well known that most people at that age don't think before doing stupid things as their brains aren't done being developed and won't be for at least another 5 years or so.[/QUOTE]

No doubt there's a lot of 15 year olds like that today but there's many who aren't. It's got quite a bit to do with how much responsibility they were made to take as a youngster. Many today can't handle disappointment but they are good as long as things are going THEIR way.
 
Goober
#27
Quote: Originally Posted by WLDB View Post

It is possible to prove pre-meditated murder. People do get convicted of first degree murder here. Even those that lie and say they didnt know or didnt plan can and have been convicted. They have witnesses they can use who were in the vehicle.

Also, given he's 15 the "i did not know, i was scared - i did not think -" is entirely possible. Its well known that most people at that age don't think before doing stupid things as their brains aren't done being developed and won't be for at least another 5 years or so.

Not being sarcastic but perhaps we should extend the YOA to 30 or 35. He knew what he was doing could cause injury or even death and decided to make a run for it.
 
JLM
#28
Quote: Originally Posted by Goober View Post

Not being sarcastic but perhaps we should extend the YOA to 30 or 35. He knew what he was doing could cause injury or even death and decided to make a run for it.

That would discriminate against 40 year olds.
 
shadowshiv
#29
Quote: Originally Posted by Praxius View Post

Just to be a devil's advocate here.... in order to find someone guilty of 1st degree, you have to prove intent to kill.... all evidence shows he was trying to evade arrest, not to purposely kill any of the officers.

And the fact that the officer's family and friends have accepted the sentence and have had closure over the whole ordeal, that should be the end of it, because as I see it, what really matters is if the victims or the victim's family are satisfied and get their closure over the crime. If they feel justice was served, then let it be and move on.

In Canada, if a police officer is killed by someone else in the line of duty, it is automatically considered a Capital Offence(hence the First Degree murder charge). So whether there was intent or not makes no difference in this case, as First Degree is pretty much a given.

Quote: Originally Posted by lone wolf View Post

I wonder where they got the van?

He borrowed the van from his father, without the father's permission.

Quote: Originally Posted by JLM View Post




One reason to maintain a gallows (or our version of Ol' Sparky) is for little bastards like that. There is no doubt he is the culprit, so there is no danger of expunging the wrong person. All that would be left to argue is the seriousness of the crime, but I'm sure his widow and daughter could give an accurate evaluation of that.

I think the fact that he is paralyzed from the waist down is a good start to the punishment that he will be dealing with.


....
 
CDNBear
#30
Quote: Originally Posted by WLDB View Post

They have witnesses they can use who were in the vehicle.

Who can testify to what they saw, heard or know. They can not testify to what they think may have been going through the drivers head.

Quote:

Also, given he's 15 the "i did not know, i was scared - i did not think -" is entirely possible.

Although true. By the age of 15, people have there sense of right and wrong firmly instilled.

Quote: Originally Posted by Goober View Post

He knew what he was doing could cause injury or even death and decided to make a run for it.

That is entirely dependant on the circumstances.

Quote: Originally Posted by shadowshiv View Post

In Canada, if a police officer is killed by someone else in the line of duty, it is automatically considered a Capital Offence(hence the First Degree murder charge). So whether there was intent or not makes no difference in this case, as First Degree is pretty much a given.....

Although true, the Jury can reject the charge. As they did in the case in the OP.

On a side note. I was at the Courthouse on the 21st, I actually watched Plunkett's wife make her statement after the Jury rejected the charge of Murder, opting instead to convict him of manslaughter. I was also there on the 29th, which was the day after the incident with the youth on hiway 48, when Nadeem Jiwa was sentenced to 12 years, minus time served.

You could feel the contempt in the air.