Precedent and Law Enforcement





Precedent and Law Enforcement

In the legal context, precedent is a court decision cited as an analogy to resolve subsequent cases containing similar issues or facts. Criminal law rules concerning precedent ascertain that any legal standards applied to a prior case with facts analogous to those of a case currently in court create a basis to resolve the matter. A binding precedent highlights the mandatory level of confinement any form of judgment must adhere to. Binding precedents stand by things decided. Persuasive precedents emphasize that any judgment must not conform to the related precedent, which in that case may be useful, or not in solving criminal cases.

The criminal law covers all criminal cases as they occur. Classification of criminal cases follows a systematic order according to the level of crime and the corresponding law governing it. By evaluating previous similar cases in a court of law, prediction of final judgment becomes an easy task. Through prediction, clear procedures are followed to enhance the stability of the decision made. Stability in law is the state of firmness and certainty that accelerates just judgments that are not questionable. Criminal judgments that have points of reference in term of prior cases ensure that no contradicting issues alter the direction of rule by law enforcers.

Legal analysis from the predictability aspect of any criminal case ascertains fairness in delivering the final verdict. The law of precedent takes into account all forms of evidence presented during the development of the case, which may alter the direction of judgment from the predicted outcome. Determination of court verdicts on criminal cases through precedent proves to be an efficient method of issuing a decision. Lack of precedent lowers the efficiency of criminal laws and law enforcers for time spent in trying to determine fair and legal decisions. It ensures that the energy and finances spent visiting the court of law are directed to other aspects such as measures to reduce the crime rate.

A young woman, X, kills her abusive partner using a knife. X, when questioned, claims that the main reason for killing him was his abusive nature that extended to battery, sexual, and psychological abuse highlighting that this was the only form of attention she received. The judge, terming it as a high-level case, gave a verdict of guilty with manslaughter instead of murder highlighting the presence of motive to kill. Woman Y kills her partner accidentally using a gun while they are out hunting for antelopes. When questioned, Y claims that she had not mastered the use of a gun and accidentally fired a shot directed to her partner. The judge issued a verdict of murder since there was no motive to kill referring to the precedent case of the woman convicted of manslaughter.

                Case X and Y provide conflicting ideas on the verdict given concerning the crime by both women. Understanding law and order is considered necessary at large but also in deeper context. Failure to understand the motive behind both killings, a similar verdict of either manslaughter or murder would render the judgment unclear. Consequences of criminal verdicts are different according to the judicial laws set and issuing the wrong judgment may prove how inefficient and reliable the criminal procedure is. The law of precedent is critical, but when faced with conflicting ideas, it does not always stand. Law enforcers, therefore, learn to adjust and not fix their verdict without the benefit of the doubt.

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