How does the book define justice? Consider the facts of the following case:
Dale and Mike Parak were twin brothers and best friends. They spent their entire lives looking out for each other’s interests. When growing up, the two were inseparable. They played sports together, double-dated frequently, and attended the same university. They grew closer as they aged, they got married about the same time, and eventually both were divorced. After they retired from their jobs, they decided to live together to save money and because they still enjoyed each other’s company.
When he was 70 years old, Mike was diagnosed with cancer. Doctors predicted that he had about six months to live. The brothers, however, agreed that Mike should not suffer. Mike and Dale wrote and signed a note stating that they decided to commit suicide. Dale broke 20 tranquilizers into Mike’s evening meal and watched as he ate it. Yet when Dale checked on Mike one hour later, Mike was still alive. Dale panicked. He took a .38-caliber revolver from his desk and shot Mike, killing him instantly. Dale then went into the kitchen and took a handful of tranquilizers. He did not die. He awoke the next morning as somebody pounded on the front door. It was a neighbor who, seeing that Dale was dazed and confused, decided to call an ambulance and the police.
The responding police officer conducted an investigation, and Dale was arrested and charged with the murder of his brother, Mike. The prosecutor, although noting it to be a difficult case, pursued the case because she thought no citizen had the right to decide when someone should die. Dale Parak pled guilty to first-degree manslaughter and was sentenced to five years in a maximum-security prison. (Note that this was the lowest sentence that could be given to a defendant convicted of his crime).
- According to the definition of justice, was this sentencing just? Why or why not?
- If you were the prosecutor in this case, would you have charged Dale Parak? Why or why not?
- If you were the judge in this case, how would you have sentenced Dale Parak? Why?
- What would be an appropriate punishment in this case? Why?
DUE ON Friday, 2016 AT 6:00 PM, WORTH 100 POINTS
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