Letter: Why are juries doing this?

Last updated 12:00 20/12/2012

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OPINION: To most of us, the evil and violence that struck down journalist Phillip Cottrell in Wellington's Boulcott St are incomprehensible. The loss of an innocent life in such a malicious and unprovoked attack is an affront to those of us who live in a civilised society.

Though we can't always be protected from unexpected, random attacks, it's not unreasonable for us to expect our justice system will reflect our outrage and condemnation when they occur, and to deal with the perpetrators accordingly.

Our society must reflect on why juries seem to be taking the ''reasonable doubt'' concept in a trial to the extreme and using that to trump all aspects of common sense and the need for natural justice.

There are only two winners here. Mr Cottrell didn't deserve to die this way and our justice system has let him, his family, and all of us down.

TONY ROSS

Eastbourne [abridged]

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