Farmer guilty of murdering burglar in UK

This is a discussion on Farmer guilty of murdering burglar in UK within the In the News: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly forums, part of the The Back Porch category; http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/717511.stm A farmer who opened fire on two burglars who broke into his remote farmhouse has been found guilty of murder. Tony Martin, 55, was ...

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Thread: Farmer guilty of murdering burglar in UK

  1. #1
    Member Array Knight's Avatar
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    Farmer guilty of murdering burglar in UK

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/717511.stm
    A farmer who opened fire on two burglars who broke into his remote farmhouse has been found guilty of murder.

    Tony Martin, 55, was sentenced to life at Norwich Crown Court for murdering 16-year-old Fred Barras by a majority verdict of 10 to two.

    The jury also found him guilty of wounding with intent Mr Barras' accomplice Brendan Fearon.

    Martin, described in court as eccentric in the extreme, had earlier been cleared unanimously of attempting to murder Mr Fearon and of possessing a firearm with intent at his farmhouse called Bleak House in Emneth Hungate, near Emneth, Norfolk.

    As the guilty verdicts were read out a cry of "Yes" was heard from the public gallery.

    'Dire warning'

    Martin, dressed in smart blazer and floral tie, remained impassive but there were screams of joy from members of the Barras' family.

    "I hope you die in jail," one shouted at Martin.

    Jailing Martin, Mr Justice Owen told him there was only one sentence he could pass.

    "This case should serve as a dire warning to all burglars who break in to people's houses," he said.


    Ellen Barras: Devastated by her son's death
    He said a householder could use reasonable force to defend themselves from burglary.

    "People have the right to use that reasonable force and it can have tragic results," he said.

    After the trial Fred Barras' family said he had been fun-loving and always happy.

    "Let's remember he was just 16 and the baby of our family," they said.

    "We are devastated by our loss. The outcome of this trial can't bring him back and our loss has torn our lives apart."

    'No satisfaction'

    Det Chief Insp Martin Wright, who led the investigation, said he took no satisfaction from the outcome of the case.

    "It has been a tragedy from start to finish," he said.

    "Burglary is without doubt one of the most despicable crimes there is but I would stress to everybody it is up to the police to resolve it and this very tragic case when there has been no winners shows that is the case."

    Martin had denied murdering 16-year-old Fred Barras on 20 August, saying he was a victim of crime and was acting in self-defence.

    fearon
    Brendan Fearon: Shot like "a rat in a trap"
    But Rosamund Horwood-Smart QC, prosecuting, said Fearon, 30 and Barras, both of Newark, Nottinghamshire, had been shot "like rats in a trap".

    The jury of six men and six women took nine hours and 36 minutes to return the guilty verdicts after the judge had told them he would accept majority verdicts on the remaining charges.

    Martin was jailed for life for the murder of Barras, with 10 years to run concurrently for the wounding offence and a further 12 months for possession of an illegal firearm.

    Martin's actions were given support after the verdict by chocolate heir Sir Peter Cadbury, who told the BBC it was legitimate for a householder to use force against an intruder "if the householder himself feels threatened".

    Crossbow

    He told BBC Two's Newsnight programme: "A lot of my friends sleep with loaded guns under their beds and I don't think they can be criticised for doing that, because if they ring the police, it will be 35 to 40 minutes before a car gets there.

    "I have had a loaded gun by my bed for the last 40 years, but in July last year, when a burglar took every piece of jewellery my wife had and my wallet and a lot else, he took the gun too."

    He added that he had now armed himself with a crossbow instead, and said he would not hestitate to use it if a burglar broke in late at night.
    I'm worried that the US may turn into this... People are more worried about the criminal's rights than law abiding citizens rights. I really don't know what to say besides I wish the best for the farmer and its a true shame that when people know what is right, they are thrown into jail for actually doing it.

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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array peacefuljeffrey's Avatar
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    "Burglary is without doubt one of the most despicable crimes there is but I would stress to everybody it is up to the police to resolve it and this very tragic case when there has been no winners shows that is the case."

    I thought I had read (this case is years old) that the police had not "resolved it" and that Mr. Martin's property had been burglarized like a dozen times!

    How long does a citizen have to lose his property to theft and damage while the police fail and fail and fail?

    In the intervening years, Mr. Martin's murder conviction was overturned and he was instead sentenced for manslaughter or something less than murder; and I think he is now out of jail.

    However, the UK government ("once-Great Britain," I've seen it called) actually consulted the surviving burglar when sentencing Mr. Martin!! THEY ASK THE CRIMINAL WHOSE ACT PRECIPITATED THE KILLING OF HIS COHORT WHAT TO DO TO THE MAN THEY WERE STEALING FROM. That's, like, psychotic.

    In the U.S., I think that the surviving burglar would face a felony murder charge because he was involved in a crime that resulted in a death. (This applies even when the person was not the proximate cause of the death.)

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    Member Array Knight's Avatar
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    Ah thanks for the update. I didn't realize it was an old report.

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    VIP Member Array peacefuljeffrey's Avatar
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    Martin's actions were given support after the verdict by chocolate heir Sir Peter Cadbury, who told the BBC it was legitimate for a householder to use force against an intruder "if the householder himself feels threatened".

    He told BBC Two's Newsnight programme: "A lot of my friends sleep with loaded guns under their beds and I don't think they can be criticised for doing that, because if they ring the police, it will be 35 to 40 minutes before a car gets there.

    "I have had a loaded gun by my bed for the last 40 years, but in July last year, when a burglar took every piece of jewellery my wife had and my wallet and a lot else, he took the gun too."

    He added that he had now armed himself with a crossbow instead, and said he would not hestitate to use it if a burglar broke in late at night.
    A good reason to support him by buying and enjoying Cadbury chocolate candy!

    (I've always loved Cadbury, actually.)

    I have to wonder, though, what Sir Cadbury has done or is doing to restore the right to arms to the subjects of the British crown.

    And I don't understand why an obviously rich dude like him would have had all his wife's jewelry in one easy-to-steal-from location in their home. And his gun was also left somewhere that it could be found and taken in a burglary. If it was the gun he kept by the bedside, why didn't he put it away when not there in the bedroom? Surely the guy has a safe? (I mean, don't all rich people have some sort of vault on their estate?)

  6. #5
    Ex Member Array dwolsten's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by peacefuljeffrey View Post
    And I don't understand why an obviously rich dude like him would have had all his wife's jewelry in one easy-to-steal-from location in their home. And his gun was also left somewhere that it could be found and taken in a burglary.
    Um, I hate to break it to you, but rich doesn't necessarily mean smart. Even worse, this Peter guy is just the heir to the Cadbury fortune.

    For a US analogy, take a look at Paris Hilton. She's the rich heir to a huge fortune, and she's a complete idiot and bimbo. I'd be seriously surprised if she had an IQ over 80.

    I don't think Sir Cadbury is that stupid, but he's obviously at the normal intelligence level where he makes dumb mistakes at times like many people.

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    It may be an older story but Mr. Martin's plight is a serious one. Some people need to be reminded of it & other newbies, may not even be aware of it.

    Here is one link on this site where it was discussed:
    http://www.combatcarry.com/vbulletin...ht=tony+martin

    I've also posted this before, but here is a partial list of some of the dumbest stories from the UK:
    Here are some of some of the Headlines:

    - U.K. torchlight possession bans flames
    - How police used £10,000 to stalk route of an apple-eating driver (they used helicopters, because she was eating an apple while driving)
    - Wardens get DNA kit to trap spitting drivers
    - 10 crimes a year solved (crimes solved per bobbie)
    - Knife sales to be banned
    - Hats off for British easyInternetcafes as baseball caps banned
    - A contract is still a contract – even if it is a contract to kill (A woman who hired a hitman to kill her has been awarded £2,000 because she is still alive)
    - Now brainstorms are off the agenda (the buzzword...has been deemed politically incorrect by civil servants)
    - Anti-Gun Campaigner Attacks 'Heavy-Handed' Police (anti-gun campaigner today criticized police as “heavy handed” after she was arrested for having a pump-action sawn-off shotgun in her home.
    - Armed police swoop on boy waving a toy gun while playing cowboys and indians in the street
    - Baby fined for littering (16 month old BABY boy landed his dad with a £50 litter fine — for throwing an empty can out of his pram.)
    - In a recent report, England’s top lawyer - Attorney-General Lord Goldsmith – was quoted as saying that criminals’ rights need to be protected as well as victims.
    - British disarmament policy, new knife ban only produces rising crime
    - Burglary victim had gun (THE victim of a vicious armed burglary is facing jail after confessing he kept a gun at his home "for protection".)
    - CALL TO BAN FAKE GUNS
    - CAUGHT IN GUN TERROR (A FISHING trip turned into a nightmare for a Sheffield father and son after they were surrounded by armed police and locked up - for buying toy guns.)
    - Clay shoot triggers police call-out (ARMED police were out-gunned - when they ambushed a clay-pigeon shoot)
    - Country crime is crippling industry (Two thirds of people living in the rural West Midlands said they had been victims of crime in the past year at a cost to businesses of more than £580,000, according to business leaders.)
    - Disruptive toddlers to be treated as potential criminals (CHILDREN as young as three are to be singled out by nursery staff if they display aggressive behavior, according to a government report)
    - Gun law: don't shoot first, shout (Countryfolk must try to scare off their prey before opening fire)
    - England has worst crime rate in world (England and Wales have the highest crime rate among the world's leading economies, according to a new report by the United Nations.)
    - Farmer robbed - and police confiscate his shotgun (strawberry farmer Eric Jarnet is fuming after police confiscated his shotgun on his 70th birthday because they feared he might emulate Norfolk farmer Tony Martin. Mr Martin became a national figure after the shotgun killing of a burglar at his farmhouse.)
    - Father faces prison for having stun gun (A FATHER who was beaten with a mallet and had his flat burnt down will spend Christmas behind bars after admitting possession of a stun gun he claimed was for his own safety.)
    - Forced out, jeweller whose wife was shot dead (A jeweller who refused to bow to "lawlessness" after his wife was shot dead during an armed raid at their shop closed his family business yesterday after falling victim to another theft.
    Victor Bates said he was "utterly dispirited" after the latest incident, in which he held the suspected thief for almost half an hour in a shop full of customers as he waited for police to arrive.)
    - Free, raid victim who fired a gun (A DECORATED former soldier walked free from court after firing a starting pistol when two men threatened him on his doorstep. But ex-special forces soldier Colin Tattersdale is now in hiding after one of the men told the court: "I want him out on the street so I can do him myself.")
    - Gun crime fears 'hitting tourism' (Visitors are being scared away by violence and binge drinking
    Nottingham's image as the gun crime capital of the UK is keeping visitors away - according to a council report.)
    - Doctors' kitchen knives ban call (doctors are calling for a ban on long pointed kitchen knives to reduce deaths from stabbing.)
    This is but a few I have about three times this many from the past 2-3 years. As you can see, the UK has some thing really really wrong going on. True, they are a sovereign country & can do whatever they like. Our fear in the USA is that our politicians want to emulate them. THAT CAN NOT BE TOLERATED!
    Quemadmodum gladius neminem occidit, occidentis telum est.-Seneca

    "If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. If I have a gun, what do I have to be paranoid about?" -Clint Smith

    "An unarmed man can only flee from evil, and evil is not overcome by fleeing from it." -Jeff Cooper

  8. #7
    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    A person doesn't have the right to defend his property. A person doesn't have the right to defend himself. A person doesn't have the right to eject criminals from his home, even if lethal force is required. And the state has the right and duty to run to ground any citizen believing he/she does have such a right. That is governmental tyranny over citizens. My it come to pass that Britain's citizens find their "brass" and revolt, at some point. May it be ugly but swift.

    That is what once-great Britain has been reduced to. That will happen here in the USA, if we're not supremely careful to disallow its ever happening.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
    Thoughts: Justifiable self defense (A.O.J.).
    Explain: How does disarming victims reduce the number of victims?
    Reason over Force: The Gun is Civilization (Marko Kloos).
    NRA, GOA, OFF, ACLDN.

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    VIP Member Array Tom G's Avatar
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    Another reason to get out of the UK. It seems all their common sense is gone. The partner of the slain buglar should be the one charged with murder.

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    VIP Member Array Blackeagle's Avatar
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    This article is seven years old, quite a bit has happend in the case since then. According to this Wikipedia article, Martin got his sentence reduced to 5 years on appeal, and was released in 2003.

    The article also has some more details about the burglary itself, including the fact that Martin shot Barras and Fearon while they were trying to flee out a window, which is the sort of thing that could get you in trouble even in some fairly gun-friendly jurisdictions here in the U.S.

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    VIP Member Array obxned's Avatar
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    Well, at one time it was a great country, but it appears the lunatics are running the asylum. I don't think there is ANY hope for them.
    "If we loose Freedom here, there's no place to escape to. This is the Last Place on Earth!" Ronald Reagan

  12. #11
    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackeagle View Post
    ... more details about the burglary itself, including the fact that Martin shot Barras and Fearon while they were trying to flee out a window ...
    Well, gee. That wasn't in the original news item. Not surprising. It's hard to know all (any?) of the proper facts via basic news, even the BBC it would seem.

    Yeah, sadly, in a similar unreality of not being able to distinguish between GG's and BG's, firing on a fleeing burglar (even a fleeing violent felon) might well get you a prison term, in the U.S.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
    Thoughts: Justifiable self defense (A.O.J.).
    Explain: How does disarming victims reduce the number of victims?
    Reason over Force: The Gun is Civilization (Marko Kloos).
    NRA, GOA, OFF, ACLDN.

  13. #12
    VIP Member Array peacefuljeffrey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by obxned View Post
    Well, at one time it was a great country, but it appears the lunatics are running the asylum. I don't think there is ANY hope for them.
    No, I think you're right; because the governmental oppression has so taken root in the psyche of the public that they think it's right and proper for things to be this way.

    The very few who know it's wrong have little or no power. Best they could hope for is come to the United States of America (I'd welcome them) and try to keep the same from happening here.

  14. #13
    Senior Member Array downrange's Avatar
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    there was a great skit on Mad TV where in the UK, a domestic dispute was happening in the streets. two bobbies pulled up to break it up when a 3rd party jumped in holding a gun at everyone. the bobbies started to leave when the couple arguing asked where they were going. "well, we're leaving... he's got a gun. what can we do?" it's funny cause it's pretty much true.
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