King Hit Law Research Paper

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1. A powerful blow to the head, neck or chest that causes the victim to fall to the ground unconscious is called a ‘king hit’. The victim may die due to the force of the blow received, or due to the impact of their skull coming into contact with the ground. Since 2000, as many as ninety Australians have been killed as a result of king hit attacks. In almost three-quarters of the deaths recorded between 2000 and 2012, alcohol was involved, said Jennifer Pilgrim, a researcher from the department of forensic medicine at Monash University. The increase in occurrences of alcohol- and drug-fuelled attacks has led to the New South Wales government instituting the ‘king-hit’ law. 2. There are many instances where king hit attacks have led to the…show more content…
The king hit law has had both positive and negative impacts on society. Some examples of the positive impact of the new legislation include the ability of the law to ensure that the punishment fits the crime, meaning that it reflects the standards of the community, and that it is only lenient when leniency is due. The legislation also assists in deterring would-be offenders thus decreasing the crime rate. According to New South Wales Attorney General Brad Hazzard: “In Sydney we’ve seen a massive reduction in violence and my view is sometimes the strict technical legal positions have to be modified by common sense that goes beyond legal technicalities.” This has an obvious positive impact on society, as less crime improves the attitudes and the quality of life of the members of the public. So as not to punish an offender too harshly, the legislation may be drafted to decrease the sentence. This ensures that the society remains supportive of the justice system because when a sentence is delivered and it is unduly harsh or unduly lenient, the public may feel that the justice system has failed and that justice has not been served…show more content…
He said: “There is plenty of evidence that [increasing penalties] ... does not deter offenders, complicates and adds to the expense of criminal proceedings and requires courts to act unjustly.” Most offenders act impulsively, and not rationally. In the case of king hit attacks, many offenders are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. A legislation that increases the mandatory minimum sentence is unfair when applied to an offender who acted impulsively, and who is not likely to reoffend. This may cause a public outcry against injustice. According to Lake Macquarie Member of Parliament Greg Piper, there is a possibility of unjust sentencing that originates from the introduction of new sentencing laws, he said: “This could be somebody who, just for want of being in the wrong place at the wrong time and just defending themselves or defending a friend, has been found technically guilty of this assault that’s caused death and gets an eight year minimum sentence. Or if it’s some other kind of injury, up to two years minimum sentence. Now I don’t believe that’s going to make that person a better member of our society, as a matter of fact I think it’s probably going to be very detrimental to our society.” The president of New South Wales Bar Association, Phillip Boulten, stated that unfair and unjustly harsh sentences were

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