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Author Topic: The People vs. Caleb Davion  (Read 1157 times)

Decoy

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The People vs. Caleb Davion
« on: 09 May 2022, 13:37:22 »
Out of curiosity, a very long time ago, I decided to look into what charges would be brought against Caleb Davion in regard to shoving his father off the balcony. Since I'm fairly certain I'm the first person the police will talk to here now if anyone falls so much as an inch, I'll share with you my hard won knowledge. So, what should Caleb be charged with? I am assuming an Americanish legal system here, so...

1) First degree murder. Did Caleb plan to intentionally push Harrison? If Malice Aforethought is proven then yup. go to sentencing. If not, go to the next step.

2) Second degree murder. Did Caleb kill Harrison in the spur of the moment? Did he act with Malicious Intent? (Snazzy name for a book, btw.) If no, then we go to the next step.

3) Voluntary Manslaughter. Did Caleb interpret Harrison's attempt at a hug as an aggressive action? Did they fight and because of it, Harrison fell? If Caleb didn't attempt to outright kill Harrison, here is where the charge belongs. If not, then we take the next step.

4) Accidental death. Caleb did not wish to harm his father and merely did not to participate in an embrace at that moment. Had he been more aware of the situation, Caleb might have taken another action. To most people, this would be a tragic action that would define them for the rest of their lives. Still, it is an accident.

..... But wait! There's more!

5) Depending on the actions Caleb undertook after Harrison's fall, we might levy the charge of Involuntary Manslaughter against him. If Caleb did nothing to aid in Harrison's resuscitation or impeded it, he could be found guilty of Involuntary Manslaughter....with a two year prison sentence and disinheritance from the throne as criminals may not gain profit by their crime.

.... But wait!  There's even more!

6) Harrison is the First Prince of the Federated Suns. It is easy to level regicide charges against Caleb, for which Caleb may be executed. Whether you want to level such charges against Caleb  if you can't level Murder 1 or 2 against Caleb, I would not recommend leveling Regicide.  However, I understand why many of the forums may choose to do it.

 I can now see why Julian didn't press the issue. Are you going to risk civil war if you cannot prove it was anything more than an accident? Even from the involuntary manslaughter angle, I can imagine a good team of lawyers will make the argument that Caleb was "too distraught to render effective aid" or some other such defense. Still, if Julian went around to other people and hinted that Caleb had more involvement in Harrison's death than first seems... things may be different.

MarauderD

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Re: The People vs. Caleb Davion
« Reply #1 on: 09 May 2022, 13:40:09 »
I lolled when I read the post and realized your thought process.  Good stuff. 

Angrii

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Re: The People vs. Caleb Davion
« Reply #2 on: 09 May 2022, 16:24:54 »
You're missing one:

Not guilty by reason of insanity.

I think this one is a serious contender, given his diagnosed paranoid schizophrenia. He certainly wasn't in his right mind if he was in the midst of a psychotic episode and people in that state are liable to be impulsive and incapable of rational, coherent thought. Lashing out at imaginary dangers is just one of many ways delusional thinking can manifest.

BrianDavion

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Re: The People vs. Caleb Davion
« Reply #3 on: 11 May 2022, 01:13:30 »
You're missing one:

Not guilty by reason of insanity.

I think this one is a serious contender, given his diagnosed paranoid schizophrenia. He certainly wasn't in his right mind if he was in the midst of a psychotic episode and people in that state are liable to be impulsive and incapable of rational, coherent thought. Lashing out at imaginary dangers is just one of many ways delusional thinking can manifest.


agreed. Also I'm not sure charging Caleb would be possiable? The charges would need to go through a federated suns court (even if Harrison wasn't killed on an embassy that was legally FS soil, you can bet Caleb had diplomatic immunity) and I think it's an open question if the first prince can even legally be charged with a crime

Metallgewitter

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Re: The People vs. Caleb Davion
« Reply #4 on: 11 May 2022, 05:01:24 »
and I think it's an open question if the first prince can even legally be charged with a crime

That is an interesting question: can ANY head of a successor state be charged with a crime? I would say that for the Combine and Confederation that would be a big "No" but I bet the Commonwealth and League have provisions that allow for the prosecution of their leader. I am not sure about the Suns though as the Suns are effectively a military dictatorship (with perhaps more liberties then say the Confederation or Combine)

BrianDavion

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Re: The People vs. Caleb Davion
« Reply #5 on: 11 May 2022, 14:11:14 »
That is an interesting question: can ANY head of a successor state be charged with a crime? I would say that for the Combine and Confederation that would be a big "No" but I bet the Commonwealth and League have provisions that allow for the prosecution of their leader. I am not sure about the Suns though as the Suns are effectively a military dictatorship (with perhaps more liberties then say the Confederation or Combine)

The Fedsuns at least on paper is a consisutional monarchy. To be honest, I suspect even in the DC and CC it's very much a matter of de facto vs de jure.

DE JURE I suspect most, if not all of the great houses leaders are answerable to the law. DE FACTO however I suspect the answer is very VERY VERY differant. 

Nibs

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Re: The People vs. Caleb Davion
« Reply #6 on: 11 May 2022, 16:41:25 »
Do we have examples of other First Princes being prosecuted for any crime? Mentions of the legal immunity of the Federated Suns ruler? Furthermore, what is the shape of the legal code in the Federated Suns? Is criminal law a federal matter to which each planet must adhere (likely a singular document containing a criminal code), or are planets largely free to make their own criminal laws pertaining to acts such as murder or assault? Obviously, acts such as sedition and regicide would always fall within a federal criminal matter.

It could even be possible that post ex facto laws be introduced to change the status of the First Prince in relation to criminal acts. Where there is a will, there is a way when it comes to massive shifts in jurisprudence.

Lastly, I would argue that as much as an Americanised law system might be the basis for Federated Suns law, it is just as likely (if not more) that it has its basis in English or French codes. Those two are diametrically different in their approach to law and could dramatically affect the situation.


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Lord Harlock

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Re: The People vs. Caleb Davion
« Reply #7 on: 11 May 2022, 17:29:46 »
Do we have examples of other First Princes being prosecuted for any crime? Mentions of the legal immunity of the Federated Suns ruler? Furthermore, what is the shape of the legal code in the Federated Suns? Is criminal law a federal matter to which each planet must adhere (likely a singular document containing a criminal code), or are planets largely free to make their own criminal laws pertaining to acts such as murder or assault? Obviously, acts such as sedition and regicide would always fall within a federal criminal matter.

It could even be possible that post ex facto laws be introduced to change the status of the First Prince in relation to criminal acts. Where there is a will, there is a way when it comes to massive shifts in jurisprudence.

Lastly, I would argue that as much as an Americanised law system might be the basis for Federated Suns law, it is just as likely (if not more) that it has its basis in English or French codes. Those two are diametrically different in their approach to law and could dramatically affect the situation.

To the best of my ability, I believe that FedSuns law is based on English Common Law as oppose to Continental Law. Also, the Judiciary is partnered similarly to US Courts with a Supreme Court in the form of the Court of Old Bailey on New Avalon over all the other courts of law. Planets in the Suns appoint their own courts etc with Federal Courts existing in tandem.

As for rather a First Prince can be tried, I believe that there is precedent for a First Prince to be tried. Simon Davion did murder his predecessor President Edward Davion and was tried in court, and was ultimately found guilty of justifiable homicide and a folk hero of sorts. I am going to say that since there was a preceding judge that the trial was held in the Old Bailey or predecessor. Simon wasn't First Prince yet, but he essentially was de facto President of the Federated Suns due to the fact that the November Conspiracy never got around to planning an aftermath to the whole scheme. As well, Regent Katherine Steiner-Davion was tried by the de-facto Suns Privy Council after the end of the FedCom Civil War. So there are precedents for trying a leader of the Federated Suns. Simon just had a more public trial.

MDFification

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Re: The People vs. Caleb Davion
« Reply #8 on: 11 May 2022, 18:03:19 »
The First Prince is also the highest constitutional authority in terms of interpreting the law though. They're a one-man (or one-woman) supreme court. They hypothetically can appeal a judgement all the way to the top, and then declare themselves innocent.

Lord Harlock

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Re: The People vs. Caleb Davion
« Reply #9 on: 11 May 2022, 18:21:51 »
The First Prince is also the highest constitutional authority in terms of interpreting the law though. They're a one-man (or one-woman) supreme court. They hypothetically can appeal a judgement all the way to the top, and then declare themselves innocent.

Not really. The Suns highest judicial authority and guardian of the law is the Court of Old Bailey as demonstrated by the Davion Sourcebook and Davion Housebook. First Prince is the highest executive with a lot of vested legislative authority due to the appointing powers to the Privy Council and sitting on the Privy Council as well. And the Privy Council is highest legislative authority. The High Council is a minor legislative debating society that at best makes suggestions to the Privy Council and at worst is an anachronism. 

Though I figure that a First Prince appoints judges to the Court of Old Bailey as well, and to my knowledge, those are life time appointments. So there is a bit of control possibly there as well. However, judges throughout history have been highly independent of their appointers.

DOC_Agren

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Re: The People vs. Caleb Davion
« Reply #10 on: 12 May 2022, 18:07:45 »
You're missing one:

Not guilty by reason of insanity.

I think this one is a serious contender, given his diagnosed paranoid schizophrenia. He certainly wasn't in his right mind if he was in the midst of a psychotic episode and people in that state are liable to be impulsive and incapable of rational, coherent thought. Lashing out at imaginary dangers is just one of many ways delusional thinking can manifest.
Yeah but would that not unable to be First Prince?  Not a good defense
"For the Angel of Death spread his wings on the blast, And breathed in the face of the foe as he passed:And the eyes of the sleepers waxed deadly and chill, And their hearts but once heaved, and for ever grew still!"

 

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