But I’m one of YOU!

A Liverpool man has been wrongly accused by vigilantes of being one of the then-boys who brutally murdered toddler James Bulger in 1993, and is receiving death threats.

Does he blame the insane mob that’s harassing him despite being told by authorities that the man they think he is is in custody?

Nup.

He blames the man they’re assuming him to be. Why won’t the real Venables come forward so that the mob can direct their death threats properly? Even seeing the pitchforks coming for him hasn’t made Mr Calvert think twice about pitchfork justice. You’d think that being on the receiving end of the mob’s ire might have taught him something about the stupidity and injustice of the way it operates – but no, he really just wants to join it.

There’s a useful life lesson completely missed.

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23 responses to “But I’m one of YOU!

  1. Well hopefully the British authorities will do the right thing and Keep Jon Venables locked up for the term of his natural life so that no one else will have to deny being him ever again…

  2. Depends what he’s done as an adult, doesn’t it?

    Or do you think that what he did at 10 should by itself result in life imprisonment regardless of the fact that he was, as I say, TEN YEARS OLD?

  3. “But didn’t you learn anything from this whole experience?

    “Marge, I haven’t learned a thing.”

    *Hmmmmm*

  4. Jeremy: In terms of justice, I think you can’t really hold a ten year old responsible for his actions, and it’s terrible that instead of trying to fix such an obviously broken child he gets locked away, ruining yet another life in this horrible tragedy.
    But being pragmatic, prison’s probably a lot safer than the outside world given the chance someone will identify him and set a lynch mob on Venables (or another wrongly identified individual)

  5. Northern Exposure

    Broggly, because it’s pragmatic, a person who did an unspeakably cruel and stupid thing when they were a child, to protect them, we should lock them up for life, so the name-and-shame-and-setaflame mobs can’t get him?

    That isn’t justice, for anyone. They protected his identity so that he could, maybe, one day, re-enter society and maybe lead a productive life. One would hope others would feel the same, but there seem to be more “Eye for an Eye” persons, than people interested in the law.

  6. Jeremy
    He has been given a chance to live a life outside a prison cell and he has blown it by breaching the conditions of his license. There is no reason that he should get an eternal revolving door of forgiveness and understanding just be when he killed he was ten years old. Remember this was no accidental killing of young James Bolger Venables and his friend tortured that three year old before they so cruelly killed him.
    So many psychopaths begin their career of evil at a young age by torturing animals in this case the first victim was a three year old child Now just you take a moment to try to imagine the grief and suffering that James Bolger’s mother has endured and continues to endure before you jump to the defense of this killer.
    Perhaps you need to take on board the idea that one chance at redemption is more than Venables deserves and having blown it he should spend the rest of his life in prison for the saftey of the public.

  7. “He has been given a chance to live a life outside a prison cell and he has blown it by breaching the conditions of his license.”

    Sorry, before we go any further – maybe you know more about this than me. What precisely has Venables done as an adult?

  8. Well he has done enough to have his license revoked so it does not matter what that offense actually is now does it?
    The significant thing is that he has breached the trust that has been put in him that he has to live a blameless life if he is to remain free in society.
    How many chances do you think he deserves?

  9. “maybe you know more about this than me.”

    Heh – I doubt it, he can’t even spell the victims name, I think Iain Hall takes the tabloid allegations as fact.

    Anyway, this is a tricky one, no doubt the crime was heinous but the perpetrators were TEN YEARS OLD, I don’t know about Iain but I’m pretty sure I had the mind of a child when I was ten and could not possibly understand the gravity of what I’d done.

    What would I do? I honestly don’t know, I’ll leave it to the experts. What wouldn’t I do? Pander to the mob mentality!

  10. Are there key words that trigger moderation here too? I just made a post in the Death Penalty thread and it went straight through? Or is this just WordPress shenanigans?

  11. “Well he has done enough to have his license revoked so it does not matter what that offense actually is now does it?”

    Justice according to Iain Hall:

    If someone who committed a heinous crime as a ten year old commits a new offence – say, smoking some cannabis – it doesn’t matter what offence it is, they should immediately be imprisoned FOR LIFE. If they commit a murder, they should be imprisoned for life. If they steal an apple, they should be imprisoned for life. It’s all the same thing – no distinction can be made between new offences regardless of what they are.

    Rob – it’s just WordPress. I can’t figure out how it makes its moderation decisions.

  12. Jeremy

    If someone who committed a heinous crime as a ten year old commits a new offence – say, smoking some cannabis – it doesn’t matter what offence it is, they should immediately be imprisoned FOR LIFE. If they commit a murder, they should be imprisoned for life. If they steal an apple, they should be imprisoned for life. It’s all the same thing – no distinction can be made between new offences regardless of what they are.

    The whole point about allowing someone out of prison on licence after they have been convicted of a most horrible crime is that their freedom is entirely conditional and that that conditionality should never never expire. You are suggesting that any minor breach of those conditions should be ignored or that it should be forgiven.
    Why should we do that?
    How serious do you think an offence has to be before a murderer out on licence has that licence revoked?
    Now the English press are suggesting that he has committed offences relating to child porn but knowing how reluctant most probation services actually are to breach their clients I think that you can sure that it was not just some misdemeanour invoked out of some sort of spite you are just suggesting that he has been taken back into custody for something trivial because it suits your polemic to do so.

  13. “knowing how reluctant most probation services actually are to breach their clients”

    What on earth are you basing that on?

    Why don’t you just admit, you have no idea what he’s actually done, and you’re just choosing to assume the absolute worst because of what he did when he was TEN YEARS OLD.

  14. Jeremy a quick google found this quote from a probation service leaflet :

    What happens if you break the rules?
    If you break the rules without good reason you
    will receive a warning or be taken back to court.
    You are only allowed one warning in any
    12-month period.

    If you are taken back to court, the court could:
    • make you do more Requirements;
    • make you do different Requirements;
    • make this Requirement or other Requirements
    you are already doing harder; or
    • send you to prison.
    The court cannot just give you a warning
    or a fine.
    The leaflet about your Community Order or
    Suspended Sentence Order will tell you more
    about what will happen if you do not stick to
    the rules.
    It is very important that you stop doing
    what the court has told you to stop doing
    and work hard to complete your sentence.

    My bold

    Source (pdf)

    By the look of this I think that it is reasonable to assume that the breach that got Venables locked up again was not likely to have been the first time that he broke the conditions of his licence.
    You keep stressing that he was “TEN YEARS OLD” as if that means that he is in some sense automatically forgiveable for the crime that he committed because of his age. but do some research into the life stories of some of the nastiest serial killers and you will find that many of them exhibited aberrant behaviour at a young age. Quite simply you just can’t keep shouting about the age of an killer as if it makes their crime forgiveable.
    Read some of this page and then tell us that you think that someone’s age gives them a “get out of jail free card”

  15. “By the look of this I think that it is reasonable to assume that the breach that got Venables locked up again was not likely to have been the first time that he broke the conditions of his licence.”

    That doesn’t follow from the bold text at all. Why don’t you just admit that you don’t have the faintest idea what Venables has done and you’re just speculating?

    The question for you is: does it make ANY DIFFERENCE AT ALL to you what he has been accused of doing now? Does he deserve to be locked up for the rest of his life NO MATTER WHAT he has done as an adult?

    That was the position you appeared to put above. Correct me if I’m wrong.

    “You keep stressing that he was “TEN YEARS OLD” as if that means that he is in some sense automatically forgiveable for the crime that he committed because of his age.”

    Of course it’s a massively mitigating factor – he was only just over the line for being capable of being tried at all. Under ten a child is held to be incapable of being held responsible for any criminal offence. If he’d been a few months younger, he’d have been immune from prosecution.

    Do you understand WHY there is a line drawn at all, why children are held not to be liable below the age of ten? Do you think that the 10 years old minimum is some kind of legal technicality, and any child should have the full force of the law applied to them no matter how old? If not, when do you think the line should be drawn?

    Venables’ crime may well have deserved life in prison if committed as an adult in the full possession of his faculties. But he wasn’t an adult. He was TEN YEARS OLD. He was a primary school kid. He hadn’t even started puberty. His brain hadn’t finished growing. For god sake, can’t you see that this makes a MASSIVE difference to his culpability?

  16. Northern Exposure

    I might be pretty dumb, I don’t know. Iain, what has Venables done to break any of those conditions? Can you link to a story or a report w/e of the actions he committed that broke the conditions of his release?

    Thanks.

  17. Jeremy

    That doesn’t follow from the bold text at all. Why don’t you just admit that you don’t have the faintest idea what Venables has done and you’re just speculating?

    As you must know the British government has been very coy indeed about what he has done to get banged up so I am of course speculating but so what? You are speculating that he has only done something insignificant. Now my first citation clearly shows that it is the policy of the probation service to give their clients one warning about their behaviour and compliance to any orders that are made so you can’t legitimately dismiss out of hand the notion that Venables would have been given one free pass for a minor infraction and that him being locked up now is circumstantial evidence that his offence against the conditions of his licence was not some minor thing as you keep trying to suggest.

    The question for you is: does it make ANY DIFFERENCE AT ALL to you what he has been accused of doing now? Does he deserve to be locked up for the rest of his life NO MATTER WHAT he has done as an adult?

    I am not unreasonable about this at all I realise that people can make mistakes and that some very small allowance for the fallibility of anyone is reasonable which is why I would think that one warning a year is quite fair, but repeated small breeches of his licence is unacceptable and should result in his going back to jail.

    Of course it’s a massively mitigating factor – he was only just over the line for being capable of being tried at all. Under ten a child is held to be incapable of being held responsible for any criminal offence. If he’d been a few months younger, he’d have been immune from prosecution.

    Do you understand WHY there is a line drawn at all, why children are held not to be liable below the age of ten? Do you think that the 10 years old minimum is some kind of legal technicality, and any child should have the full force of the law applied to them no matter how old? If not, when do you think the line should be drawn?

    Sigh, Of course I understand what the line is drawn at ten years of age. It is all about the child’s understanding of what is right and wrong

    Venables’ crime may well have deserved life in prison if committed as an adult in the full possession of his faculties. But he wasn’t an adult. He was TEN YEARS OLD. He was a primary school kid. He hadn’t even started puberty. His brain hadn’t finished growing. For god sake, can’t you see that this makes a MASSIVE difference to his culpability?

    Well when it comes to it lets not forget that the child that he and his accomplice tortured and then killed was a totally innocent three year old, to my mind being TEN YEARS OLD may make a MASSIVE difference if we are talking about say property or vandalism but we are talking about murder here and for that the law should be far less forgiving and far less willing to accept claims of diminished responsibility because of the offenders age If they know that to kill another child is wrong then they know enough to suffer the consequences of their acts.

    And just how many ten year olds do you actually know well enough to judge how capable they are of appreciating the difference between right and wrong?

  18. “As you must know the British government has been very coy indeed about what he has done to get banged up so I am of course speculating but so what? You are speculating that he has only done something insignificant. “

    I did no such thing. I said that we don’t know what the facts are and the mob is going off half-cocked.

    “Now my first citation clearly shows that it is the policy of the probation service to give their clients one warning about their behaviour and compliance to any orders that are made so you can’t legitimately dismiss out of hand the notion that Venables would have been given one free pass for a minor infraction and that him being locked up now is circumstantial evidence that his offence against the conditions of his licence was not some minor thing as you keep trying to suggest.”

    That doesn’t follow at all. Maybe it was his second minor infraction.

    “repeated small breeches of his licence is unacceptable and should result in his going back to jail.”

    For how long? I believe you suggested life.

    “the law should be far less forgiving and far less willing to accept claims of diminished responsibility because of the offenders age If they know that to kill another child is wrong then they know enough to suffer the consequences of their acts.”

    You don’t understand the principle at all – the heinousness of the crime has NOTHING WHATSOEVER to do with the level of understanding and culpability of the perpetrator as a result of their age.

    It’s not just understanding right and wrong.

    “And just how many ten year olds do you actually know well enough to judge how capable they are of appreciating the difference between right and wrong?”

    I fail to see your point. It’s hardly controversial that ten year olds have a vastly inferior understanding of the world to, and ability to control themselves and resist bad behaviour than, an adult.

  19. Northern Exposure

    Where’s the story that says he’s been nicked Iain, I can’t find one.

  20. Try this NE

    Either way, Venables’ arrest two weeks ago for possession of indecent images of children, following his release on licence in 2001, has once again turned the spotlight on one of the darkest episodes in British criminal history.

    In fact, the chain of events which ended in James Bulger’s death began long before the security cameras captured Thompson and Venables leading him away at 3.43pm on February 12, 1993.

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1257614/The-police-sure-James-Bulgers-year-old-killers-simply-wicked-But-parents-dock.html#ixzz0i8kHi9en

  21. There’s also the fact that since we do not know the terms of his release, we have no idea how small or large a crime, transgression of the rules or failure to meet requirements would result in him being re-imprisoned.

    Iain, you don’t know what his terms are. You only know what they generally are, when someone is released on probation. He was not released on probation, because he was imprisoned at Her Majestys Pleasure, not for a specified term. Since his was the first case of a defendant of his age in a century, it follows that his release terms was probably somewhat different to the usual offender on probation. Coupled with the fact that he was never sentenced to a specific term, its likely his terms were far more harsh than the usual.

    Not that facts bother a mob. Which is the issue. You don’t have all the facts, but you’re quite happy to demand that he be imprisoned until his death. Without knowing a thing about what he did. Pick up your pitchfork and be proud, Iain.

  22. Northern Exposure

    Cheers Iain.

    I’m ready to tar and feather everyone who ever met Venables before he was 10 years old and beat them to death, where every one of them should belong. They should have just stoned the child infront of the old bailey, save us all a lot of time. Infact we should just shoot people on the spot when they break a law, any law (except road laws, because if I want to go a couple KM over the speed limit, I should be able to, right?) and just make it like a horse hospital! Oh no, you tagged a wall with some spray paint, no hope for rehabilitation chkchkBOOM.

    yew has soulvd awl uf iur prolems ean. tnky.

  23. I thought the details of Venables alleged crime are being withheld because it may prejudice his chance of a fair trial.

    So much for that then.

    If you have one some of those simpsons porn images on your computer or mobile phone in NSW you are in possession of child porn. I wonder if those episodes of South park where cartman acts and dresses like the Vietnamese child hooker count?

    (Next time someone in NSW shows you their hilarious new mobile wallpaper tell them that watch their reaction.)

    So obviously, before he’s been tried we should assume he’s guilty and then lock him up forever.

    And after all 10 years old probably isn’t too young for death row is it?

    I mean really, if you do something horrible enough.

    Tho really an execution is probably too quick. The punishment should fit the crime after all.

    Perhaps the state should chop their toes off with a bolt cutter first. I read bits from one of those 80s CIA torture manuals once, there’s plenty of good vengeance in them.

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