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too not understand UKs low age of crinemal responseabilty

(32 Posts)
worridmum Tue 19-Feb-13 01:07:04

I dont understand why England, Wales and Northern Ireland have one of if not lowest age of responsebilty in the developed world even lower then the UN recomended age of responsebilty. (If I rember correctly Scotland is higher)

If I rember correctly the government at the time lowered to age so that the bulger killers could be tried as prevously they would of fallen bellow age of responseabilty.

I think I am being unreasonable to think its silly having the age so low in comparson with the rest of Europe and in most states of the USA and most other developed nations and even against the recomendations of the UN.

Maybe England needs this as we are struggling with one of the highest youth crimes in Europe which to me indicates something somewhere is serously wrong here as nations with higher populations are not suffering from these levels of youth crime (eg Germany and France).

I am being unreasonable to suggest we need to invest time and money to discover what is going wrong with Brithish society as a whole so we can treat the cause of these problems rather then just the syptoms.

Am sorry if this is the wrong place am relitavly new to posting here and this is my thread. And am also sorry about the spelling and grammer from this post I am dyslexic posting on a phone without a spell check.

AThingInYourLife Tue 19-Feb-13 09:53:39

I think 10 is a reasonable age for criminal responsibility.

What we do with ten year olds who commit crimes is another matter.

ElliesWellies Tue 19-Feb-13 11:53:10

It depends on the level of the crime, I think. It's so hard to find a balance.

I have no experience of any of this really, but I would expect a 10-year-old caught stealing sweets to get a telling off from the police but for it not to go any further (unless it happened repeatedly).

That is a million miles away from James Bulger's killers. In my opinion you just cannot have people like that, of any age, loose in society. Their crime showed elements of 'adult' understanding, e.g. premeditated, then tried to cover it up. They clearly knew what they were doing. And of course there is the argument that they were only 10, but already capable of that? Where might they end up?

I think 10 is ok as the age of responsibility.

kimorama Tue 19-Feb-13 12:52:56

well, a lot of people think it is too low at ten. Partly because other countries are 2 to 5 years older. A crown Court trial of a 10 year old is said to look ludicrous to those who take part. A bit Dickensian I suppose. Top lawyers are anything but progressive

cory Tue 19-Feb-13 14:19:28

Sweden has a criminal age of 15, which is the same as the age of consent there. Seems quite logical to me.

What it does not mean is that nobody deals with child law breakers, merely that it is not the criminal justice system. Child killers would still be dealt with by the state, but through specialist youth workers/a specialised institution.

Remotecontrolduck Tue 19-Feb-13 15:29:24

Too low?! Really? Sweden's 15 is very old, are they really saying a 14 year old doesn't know exactly what they're doing and what the implications are of it?

10 is fine, I'd be happy with 8 as I think it is in Scotland

cory Tue 19-Feb-13 15:33:12

Remotecontrolduck Tue 19-Feb-13 15:29:24
"Too low?! Really? Sweden's 15 is very old, are they really saying a 14 year old doesn't know exactly what they're doing and what the implications are of it? "

So how come we have an age of consent of 16? Are we saying a 16yo doesn't know what they are doing when they have sex? Surely that is precisely what we are saying.

Having a higher criminal age of responsibility means you are putting more responsibility on the adults to prevent the child from engaging in criminal activity. Just as having a higher age of consent means you are putting responsibility away from the child, onto the adults.

cory Tue 19-Feb-13 15:34:17

correction: "a 15yo doesn't know"

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