WHAT RIGHTS ARE VICTIMS PERMITTED UNDER THE LAW OF YOUR STATE?
Consider the Victim
In this assignment, you will identify the victims and the defendants, the rights of victims permitted under state law, the procedures to prosecute an accused, and the possible penalties based on the given scenario.
Centervale police officers, Anne and Justin, respond to a report of domestic dispute. There had been a total of nine calls for service, including two in the past year. On the way, Anne informs Justin that this may be a very volatile situation because this couple is constantly in and out of Domestic Violence Court; even though they separate all the time, they always get back together.
Here’s What Happened . . .
The officers arrive and knock on the door, “Hello! Police, can someone please come to the door?” A man yells “Come in!” from inside the house. They decide not to enter the residence under these circumstances to protect their own safety. Anne asks the man to come outside and speak to them.
The door opens. A man, who identifies himself as Mike and a friend of the family, opens the door. He says that Lilly and her husband, Johnny, were just fighting and that there is no problem now. Mike did not appear to be intoxicated but smelled of alcohol. Anne explained that someone has reported a domestic dispute to the police department from this residence and that they were there to check upon the situation. Anne asks Mike if anyone was using any weapons. Mike denied this and said that Lilly was inside the house, ironing clothes. If Anne wanted, she could go and talk to Lilly.
Justin stays with Mike while Anne enters the house and calls for Lilly. Lilly says, “Officer, he hit me on the head with his hand and I hit him with the iron.” As this was a mutual assault, Anne stops questioning Lilly and asks Mike what Lilly hit Johnny with. Mike responds, “With the iron.”
Anne asks Lilly where Johnny is and she says he was in the dining room. Anne asks Lilly if Johnny has any weapons. Lilly says she did not think he did or at least he did not when he hit her in the head. Anne stays with Mike and Lilly while Justin cautiously enters the house to discover Johnny in fetal position under the dining table.
When Justin first approaches him, Johnny is unresponsive but slowly becomes responsive. Justin notices a large contusion on the left side of Johnny’s face when he rolls over to look at Justin. Justin calls for an ambulance, as Johnny was not in a position to answer any questions due to the injury on his head and the possible effects of the shock.
Anne continues to question Mike, “Who struck whom first?” Mike responds, “Johnny hit Lilly like he always does when he drinks Jack Daniels and beer, and then Lilly really got mad at Johnny, hit him with the iron, and went back to ironing. I don’t know where Johnny went after that because I was on the couch watching TV and drinking beer.” Anne then asks Mike, “How many times did Lilly hit Johnny with the iron?” Mike responds, “Only once that I saw.”
Anne further asks, “How many times did Johnny strike Lilly?” Mike states, “Twice that I saw.”
Anne asks how much had they been drinking. Mike responds, “Johnny had been drinking about 4 or 5 bottles of beers and Jack Daniels, Lilly did not drink at all, and I only had half a bottle of beer.”
Johnny was taken to the hospital to have the contusion checked. When Johnny was stable, he was questioned and advised of his rights. He describes that he was angry because Lilly did not come home at 4:00 p.m., and he was hungry. He admitted that he had been drinking and struck his wife. The next thing he knew was that he was at the hospital.
By Tuesday, 21, 2014, in a minimum of 250 words, post your response to the following questions in the Discussion Area:
- In this situation, who is the victim and who is the defendant? What are the reasons for your choice?
- What rights are victims permitted under the law of your state? Use examples to support your response.
- How should the prosecution proceed in this case?
- What are the possible penalties that can be imposed in this case?
Using the Argosy University online library and your state government websites, you need to conduct additional research to find out the differences in rights permitted to victims under the law of your state.
The STATE IS PA (Pennsylvania)