Solicitors in Milton Keynes - Family Law, Motoring Law, Domestic Violence

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Encouraging us to ‘get stuck in’ if we see violent crime, a top police officer has reminded us that the law fully protects those who seek to defend themselves, or their property or others who face unlawful assault. This is the law’s way of telling us that reasonable self-defence and the defence of others is a natural human reaction.  30 years ago, on a tube on  the Central Line, I defended an elderly lady who was being racially abused and ended up in a physical confrontation with 2 thugs. A couple of years after that I apprehended a man dressed in woman’s clothes who had been filming ‘up-skirts’ in the Ladies’ toilets.  When I recount these tales of derring-do to my daughters they raise their eyes to the skies, whilst twirling their fingers towards their temples! Actually I understand their reaction. Between 2002 and 2012 the number of citizens’ arrests fell by almost 90%. This is an odd statistic however, given that one accepted characteristic of the so-called ‘reasonable man’ is that he is invested with sufficient courage and fortitude to be prepared to intervene in order to prevent the commission of crime. However, to ‘get stuck in’ does not necessarily mean physical interventions. It may mean simply calling the police, beeping your horn, shouting at the perpetrator or filming his actions. Also the officer is careful to admonish us that we should not physically intervene if there is a material risk of us getting seriously hurt or we do not have other like-minded individuals around us. The official advice to have-a-go heroes in relation to suspected terrorists is to  ‘run, hide, report.’

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