2 posts / 0 new
Last post
Alex Morris
Alex Morris's picture
999: what's your emergency?

Hi all,

I watched this episode last night and found it quite interesting. A lot of stuff that's relevant to self defence and the law so I thought I would post it for anyone interested.




Iain Abernethy
Iain Abernethy's picture

Good share! Channel 4 do some great documentaries. I’m not sure that those outside of the UK will be able to view it? These things are also online for so long, so people should watch soon.

The key lesson of the documentary is quite clearly that we have no right to take the law into our own hands. We can use force to prevent crimes being committed (not that we always should, as the show makes clear), but we have no legal right to get revenge or punish.

Many of the events covered showed people acting on what they felt was “right”, but they had no legal right to act in that way. Taking a baseball bat into the street to deal with people who had beaten you up, employees beating up someone for alleged stealing, etc all lead to legal problems.

The case where the suspected shoplifter fell forward on the bottles he had in a bag, when being restrained by the security guard, and dying shortly afterward as result of the wounds is also tragic. The video shows just how quickly the use of even moderate force (putting both arms under the shoplifter’s arms from the rear in order to restrain and stop him potentially reaching for weapons) can turn deadly in certain circumstances. A man dead and another facing a manslaughter charge (later dropped) as a result of 3 seconds of activity. It underlines the fact that all use of force can potentially have severe consequences.

The results of the investigations also underlines that the legitimate use of force generally does not get prosecuted; but taking the law into you own hands will see legal consequences.

All the best,