DownUnderThink (Part 2)

This is the second of a three-part article looking at the work of the social engineers in the State of Victoria here in Australia.

The first part examined the removal of the common law partial defence for murder known as “Provocation,” and the fiasco of introducing and subsequently abolishing “Defensive Homicide” in its place. Foremost in their minds was to allow for women who killed “in response to family violence.”

We will now examine some actual Australian legal cases to see the impact:

First, let me explain how these cases are referred to. In criminal cases in Australia, the state takes the accused to trial so it is common to refer to the accused’s surname as the name of the case. So for example we will refer to each case by the surname of the accused in italics to distinguish between the case and the actual person. For example: Creamer, the case, and Creamer, the accused individual.

Moffa was heard in 1977. Michele “Mick” Moffa, an Australian man of Italian origin, was found guilty of murdering his wife, Kay. He successfully appealed the conviction, having the murder charge downgraded to manslaughter on the grounds of provocation.

The case is often cited in other cases because the ruling in Moffa set the precedent of allowing what we now call “racial vilification” as grounds for provocation. However, it is also a case where a man, angered by his wife’s confessions of “screwing with everybody in the street” with nude photographs to back up the claim, lashed out and killed his wife.

Does this mean that any man could claim this partial defence in the event of killing his wife? In Voukelatos, Peter Voukelatos killed his wife in 1987 by shooting her once in the leg and once in the back. Voukelatos provided an expert witness to prove that his Greek heritage meant that his wife’s unfaithfulness would have been a source of great shame for him. It made no difference to the verdict. Voukelatos was found guilty of murder, and his appeal was denied.

Do all murder cases revolve on husbands killing their wives? Consider Johnson, where the brothers, Peter and Phillip, killed their father Ken Johnson. The brothers, then aged 19 and 16 respectively, had an ongoing animosity with their father, who was “evidently a heavy drinker and prone to be violent at least when in liquor.” He was also “dominating” by nature. At various times Ken had told the boys that they were no longer welcome in the house.

The boys had gone to visit their mother in hospital and came back home late. They had both been drinking. They retired to their respective rooms when their father came out of his and told Peter to leave. Peter told him he had nowhere to go and it was late. He asked if they could stay until morning. Ken shrugged his shoulders and walked away.

Assuming that the father had given his permission, Peter began to undress for bed. Ken returned to the room and attacked Peter. He punched him on the nose, breaking it, and strangled him to the point where Peter turned blue. Phillip, on hearing the commotion, entered the room and came to his brother’s aid. The fight which ensued moved from the bedroom to the hallway. Peter heard Ken say he would kill Phillip. At some point Phillip obtained some knives, one of which the father somehow got control of.

Peter was in and out of consciousness and made some effort to aid his younger brother. He received cuts from the knife his father was wielding. Phillip too was stabbed by his father during the fighting. Ultimately, Phillip got Ken to the ground where he repeatedly kicked and jumped on him, killing him. Both boys were charged and convicted of murder. The conviction was eventually reduced to manslaughter on appeal by reason of provocation.

This is exactly the type of family violence by a dominating male that the feminists are supposedly trying to protect women from. Clearly the Johnson brothers, due to their being male, do not count in the social engineers’ eyes as worth protecting.

The last case of “provocation” is Ramage, where James Ramage was charged with murder. In this case James Ramage killed his wife, Julie, in 2003. The jury found Mr. Ramage guilty of manslaughter by reason of provocation. It is clear from the judge’s comments that he believes the jury was too lenient.

The Ramage marriage was in trouble. Julie had moved out with their daughter, leaving their son with James. They had a number of meetings and some counseling.  James was hoping to convince Julie to come back, but Julie had begun a new relationship with another man.

On the fateful day, the couple met at their house that James was renovating in order to woo her back. Julie was not interested in the renovations, or any other attempts to resurrect the marriage. Instead, James said Julie had taunted him, saying that sex with him had always repulsed her and that the new man was better in bed. James Ramage then says he lost control at this point, knocked Julie to the ground and proceeded to strangle her.

The judge had difficulty with the verdict because the taunts seem too mild to provoke such a violent reaction. There are many men who hear such things in the heat of a breakup who do not resort to such violence.

There is a difference between a poor jury decision and a patriarchal “thumbs up” for killing his wife. Ramage did, after all, serve nine years in jail and is now on parole. However, political machinations were already underfoot to remove provocation from the statute books in Victoria, and Ramage was used as proof in the media that the law was needed to be changed. Provocation was out and Defensive Homicide in. Let us now look at what difference this made:

The timing of Claire MacDonald’s killing of her husband Warren meant that Defensive Homicide was unavailable for her. Claire tricked Warren to come to a paddock on their property where she lay waiting, in camouflage, with a rifle. She shot him several times, and he bled to death from the wounds.

For her defence, Claire relied on the notion of the “battered wife syndrome.” In this, the general thrust is that Claire was trapped by fear generated by her husband’s repeated abuse.  However, Claire did not seek help from the police or any of the shelters, social workers, government departments, or non-government services that were available. Had she been turned away by any of these, then perhaps her desperation would have been real. Therefore, she had precisely the kind of unreasonable belief that the social engineers were targeting with Defensive Homicide.

At her bail hearing, the judge did discuss the possibility of MacDonald claiming provocation. As it turned out, the jury were swayed by her tales of abuse and found her not guilty of either murder or manslaughter. So if self-defence was applicable in MacDonald, who was Defensive Homicide for?

Eileen Creamer was aware that her husband David was planning to reunite with his first wife. She killed him by beating him senseless with a blunt object. She then stabbed him when he was unable to defend himself. She left him to bleed to death and called the authorities the next day, blaming persons unknown for the crime.

She was found guilty of Defensive Homicide rather than murder. As Kellie Toole points out in “Self-Defence and the Reasonable Woman: Equality before the New Victorian Law”, it is difficult to see how the jury reached this verdict. Worse than Ramage, Creamer had blatantly lied in her defence, inventing rape claims on the spur of the moment. Her version of the “struggle” before she killed her husband David was also not seen as credible by the judge.

Again the leniency of the jury was not echoed in the judge’s summation. In other words, if Creamer had a belief that her life was in danger, it was too unreasonable to be believed.

Middendorp is one of the cases where the social engineers complain that Patriarchy had outwitted them. By finding a man guilty of Defensive Homicide the jury was supposed giving its approval of violence against women. However, it is impossible to read Middendorp without the words “drugs” and “alcohol” jumping out. That this could be seen as a “Patriarchal power ploy” is pure nonsense. Luke Middendorp and his partner, Jade Bowndes, lived the lives of addled addicts stumbling from one self-created crisis to the next. The relationship was violent, and that violence was reciprocal and fueled by drugs and alcohol.

In its case, the prosecution argued that the violence was one sided, and gave evidence of times when Luke was violent towards Jade. In his defence, Middendorp cited examples of Jade’s violence towards him. On both sides, these examples included throats being cut and trips to hospital. Jade had a Family Violence Order out against Luke, and the conditions placed on Luke’s home owned by the Salvation Army was that Jade should not live there. None of this stopped Jade repeatedly re-uniting with Luke, including staying at Luke’s home.

On the day in question, Jade and a male friend came to Luke’s house. Jade, her friend and Luke were intoxicated. Luke initially refused them entry, waving a knife in the process.  Nonetheless, Jade and her friend went inside. Shortly afterwards an argument ensued and Luke, again brandishing the knife, chased Jade’s friend out of the house and down the road.

Jade remained inside the house and, according to Luke, challenged him with a knife of her own when he returned. In the struggle that followed, Luke reached over Jade’s shoulder and stabbed her in the back whilst wrestling Jade’s knife out of her hand. Jade then staggered out onto the street where, with Luke berating her, she died.

The jury verdict was guilty of Defensive Homicide. Again, there are difficulties with the verdict, but differently from Ramage, MacDonald, or Creamer.

There is no doubt that Luke was aggressive before and during the deadly fight with Jade. However, there is also no doubt that Jade met this aggression head on. Perhaps here some element of “provocation” would have been a more accurate summary of the circumstances. Enough to reduce a murder charge? Perhaps, but given that the case was fought in the context of “Defensive Homicide,” a clear view on that cannot be formed.

In Middendorp and Creamer, we see that the partial defence of provocation, for all of its inadequacies, was superior to the Defensive Homicide substitute. The unreasonable belief in both cases was simply that: unreasonable. In Creamer there was no threat to her life or liberty; in Middendorp, the threat was real, but so was the threat that Luke Middendorp presented to Jade Bowndes.

It is worth noting here that Creamer is still referred to by the Victorian Legal Reform Council as a case of a woman responding to domestic violence. Scandalous!

It is also important to recognize something of a pattern here. In Ramage, the defence brought in expert testimony to buttress the notion that Ramage “snapped.” This evidence was given by the psychologist who was counseling the couple. The judge summed this up as Ramage being “extremely anxious, obsessed and emotionally fraught at the disintegration of [the] marriage.”

Likewise, in MacDonald, a psychiatrist testified that she fitted the pattern of the “battered wife.” Because of her “learned helplessness” she could not seek outside help or leave her husband.

If we take gender out of the equation, the trials became as much about the pain and suffering of the accused at the hands of the victim  as it did about the murder of the victim. Similarly, Middendorp and Creamer became more about the couples’ unusual history as it did about the killing itself. In all of these cases, the accused tried to become the victim.

The real question, however, is this: at what point do killings like these become community-sanctioned revenge? In fact, the Feminist argument with Ramage is just that: James exacted instant revenge on Julie for wanting to leave him.

However, they won’t phrase it that way because, in truth, the “battered women” defence has the same problem. Unless the women are in actual chains, they do have many options to alleviate their situation and prosecute an abusive husband through the courts.

There can be no question that on the day, both Eileen Cramer and Claire MacDonald were in charge of the situation. Like James Ramage, these women could have walked safely away from the scene and simply got on with their lives without their partner. There is no doubt that David Cramer and Warren MacDonald were at their wives’ mercy on those respective days.

It is also impossible to see how self-defense in the face of a dominating, larger, more powerful male could be discussed in MacDonald and even, in some circles, Creamer, but not in Johnson. Even in Ramage and Middendorp, their physical size was cited as a reason for a harsher sentence. In particular, why would the sixteen year old Phillip not be eligible for such consideration?

As long as the social engineers continue to base their laws on the flawed logic of Feminism, they will continue to run in circles of new laws – review – new laws – review – ad infinitum.  And, as pointed out previously, the reviews are where the social engineers make their money.

It would be foolish indeed to think that this cycle is not deliberate.

In the final, upcoming part of this series, we will examine how this Feminist logic is being applied to the laws concerning sexual assault.

References

  1. Moffa: A 1970s case which allowed the provocation defence
  2. Voukelatos: The case of a man murdering his wife where the provocation claim failed
  3. Johnson: The case of the two brothers killing their father
  4. Ramage: The poster case for the abolition of provocation
  5. MacDonald: Bail Application
  6. Toole, Kellie: Self-Defence and the Reasonable Woman: Equality before the New Victorian Law (includes details of MacDonald as well as Creamer)
  7. Women Kills Husband from Sniper’s Nest – The Age
  8. Abused wife cleared of husband’s murder – The Sydney Morning Herald
  9. Tears as ‘sniper’ woman acquitted of murder – The Age
  10. Creamer: Verdict – Defensive Homicide for women
  11. Creamer: Appeal denied
  12. Middendorp: Defensive Homicide for men
  13. Middendorp: Appeal
  14. Middendorp: Pre-trial arguments

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