By Jonathan Herring MA, BCL, Marise Cremona BA, LLM (auth.)
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The rules of procedure applicable to the two forms of trial are different, the sentencing powers differ, as do the rights of appeal, but the elements of the offence (with which this book is concerned) do not change according to whether the accused is tried in the Crown Court or the magistrates' court. A much earlier classification distinguished between felonies and misdemeanours. This distinction was abolished by the Criminal Law Act 1967 and is only mentioned here because references are still sometimes made in judgements to felonies or misdemeanours and may otherwise be puzzling.
5). The judge will inform a jury if this may be possible. It is not true to say that the jury are not concerned with the law at all: if that were so, then the 'verdict' would merely be a series of statements of fact about what the jury think happened. A verdict is the law applied to fact, which results in a conclusion of guilt or innocence. An important aspect of the jury's function is to decide what happened: whether a particular witness is telling the truth, for example; or whether an identification that has been denied is reliable.
The argument is that having thrown the punch, whichever of the different consequences occur is a matter of chance, beyond the control of the defendant, and so the level of blame attached to the defendant should be the same whichever consequence occurs. A pure objectivist focuses not on what the defendant believed would happen but on what actually happened; not on what the defendant foresaw but what a reasonable person would have foreseen. Objectivists argue that to say consequences are a matter of luck is unreal.