I AM somewhat dismayed by the poor decision by the courts as recounted in your report, “Court hits headbut offender with $4500 whack” (The Border Mail, August 6).
It would appear the man convicted was actually defending himself.
Looking at your report, Charlie Laskey was convicted for headbutting Jacob Summers-Smith after being approached, aggravated, harassed and finally assaulted by Summers-Smith.
All this occurred while Summers-Smith was “intoxicated”.
Keeping in mind that as far as I can tell, Laskey was minding his own business up until he was assaulted by Summers-Smith and he actually warned Summers-Smith not to touch him again.
What was Laskey supposed to do in that situation?
Quite obviously, an intoxicated person who harasses and lays hands on you is at least a reasonable threat; I would have thought in such circumstances, defending oneself would be the best course of action.
While I have some sympathy for Summers-Smith for the injuries he experienced, ultimately these injuries are the result of his own aggression towards someone who — as far as I can tell — posed no danger or threat to him.
In a commonsense society, Summers-Smith would have been advised to take his injuries as a lesson to curb his inebriated behaviour and keep his hands to himself.
I am fairly sure that if most people got blind drunk and went around assaulting people, the police and courts would not be overly sympathetic when karma bites them on the backside.
Then again, most don’t have a parent who is a (former) police officer.
— ROBERT KAIGHIN,