Three Drinking Questions

Should someone who takes a life because they were driving intoxicated or under the influence be charged with murder?

If not, what type of sentence do you believe would be in line with the life sentence given to the victim?

If someone is seriously disabled and their life permanently altered by an intoxicated driver what should the appropriate punishment be?

19 thoughts on “Three Drinking Questions

  1. abyssbrain

    I’m very far from being a lawyer but I at leaast understand that for a crime to be considered “murder”, it has to be proven beyond reasonable doubt that the defendant really intended to kill the victim. But since it’s more than likely that the drivers didn’t even know the victims, then it’s impossible for them to plan their demise. Thus, they will just be charged with homicide.

    Personally though, I think that they should be given higher sentence…

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      1. abyssbrain

        Well, in China, if they said that it’s murder, then it’s murder… there’s nothing that you can do.

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  2. vanbytheriver

    That’s a tough set of questions you have there, George. Murder doesn’t fit, if not intentional, but the sheer negligence and stupidity of driving intoxicated…deserves a fitting punishment. Not sure how far it can go, though. ??? For the disabled victim, there should be serious financial compensation..that would remove just one of many worries.

    Liked by 2 people

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    1. George Post author

      But murder, by definition in some jurisdictions can be viewed as a wanton, reckless and negligent act. Wouldn’t driving while intoxicated fit that description? I know it’s a difficult question to answer. But my guess is the answer is probably less difficult for the family of the victim.

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
  3. A.PROMPTreply

    Perhaps the driver should have to take on the care of the disabled victim for the rest of his (driver’s) life. In the case of a death, perhaps caring for the victim’s family for the rest of his (driver’s) life.

    Liked by 1 person

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  4. Dale

    I agree with A.Prompt. I think the involuntary homicide or manslaughter or whatever it is called (because I doubt any drunk driving deaths are ever on purpose) charge should come with a life sentence. Not in jail, in various rehab centres or other places where the “culprit” must give back. In this case, I don’t really believe jail time will do any good…

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    1. George Post author

      I agree the punishment should be harsh. But let me ask you this…if this was a persons second, third or fourth DUI offense, would your feelings about jail time be different?

      Liked by 1 person

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  5. Hugh's Views and News

    What a tough question you ask George, but I’m with the others and say that a charge of manslaughter should be given. Murder is when you have every intension in killing your victim.

    There should certainly be far tougher punishments for drink/drug driving, plus for those who continue to use mobile phones whilst driving.

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      1. George Post author

        I know, this is one of those questions that no one wants to answer because many people have been in this situation and were fortunate nothing happened. There are several definitions of murder, at least in this country. Murder, in some jurisdictions can be viewed as a wanton, reckless and negligent act by someone, which would fit the description of an individual who was under the influence and driving. While one could argue, as you said, that there may not have been any intention to kill someone when that individual got in a car drunk, one could also argue that he or she knew that driving a vehicle in that condition put himself and others at risk, sort of like firing a gun into a crowd. Maybe you’ll be lucky and miss, maybe you’ll injure someone or maybe death will be the end result.
        I think the laws on this have been slow to change because drinking to excess has always been socially acceptable, getting drunk with your friends is fun and most people know someone close to them who has driven a car when they had no business doing it and they certainly wouldn’t want them going to jail for having a good time.
        Funny how our laws and punishments are sometimes predicated on social acceptance. Thank you for your response. Your point on mobile devices while driving is also very relevant.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. fillyourownglass

    Tough question. I can say that I have never had a drink and driven a car, and I mean not even one drink. I am just not willing to risk the chance that I would cause harm to another person because I was impaired. I know people who have had a DUI and luckily never harmed anyone. They have paid the price (mainly in guilt, high insurance prices, and even job loss), and they never drove while impaired again. I think the penalties should be severe, especially if an injury or death occurs. I am a believer in accountability and self-responsibility.

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