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Tuesday, December 16, 2008 

No mercy for Mercer.

I don't think a judge has ever or at least recently so succinctly and damningly summed up the utter vacuity behind a murder:

In sentencing Mercer, the judge Mr Justice Irwin said: "This offence arose from the stupid, brutal gang conflict which has struck this part of Liverpool. You were caught up in that from a young age, but it is clear you gloried in it. It is wrong to let anyone glorify or romanticise this king of gang conflict.

"You are not soldiers. You have no discipline, no training, no honour. You do not command respect. You may think you do, but that is because you cannot tell the difference between respect and fear. You are selfish, shallow criminals, remarkable only by the danger you pose to others."

This blog is often critical of authoritarian crime policies, but an extra ten years on the twenty-two before Mercer can be considered for release would I think have served the interests of justice even better. You take someone's youth in such a pointless, meaningless, random way, we take your youth from you. It might just make some think twice, if indeed those involved have the intellect to do even that.

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Hmm. I'm not convinced Mercer deserves any longer in jail than he would have done had he managed to kill Wayne Brady as planned - while Rhys Jones's death was tragic, it clearly wasn't what any of them intended.

(obviously, he would still deserve a long sentence had he killed Brady and not Jones)

Surely the fact that someone other than the person intended died because of their idiotic shallow little feud over two postcodes is all the more reason for the sentence to be harsh and potentially a deterrent. I'll admit, I don't think it will be much of a deterrent, but the sheer waste of life in this instance on all sides I think justifies an even harsher sentence.

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