I got into a long moral talk about this with my friends so... let's see what you guys say.
Our justice system is so flawed these days where the rich can go free easily through bribes or just paying off an excellent lawyer. Sad and all...
so, hypothetically, let's say one of your family members died in a hit and run accident. And the killer is a multibillionaire dude and he offers you $1,000,000 in settlements. You can either take the cash or try your luck in court. But he's really rich so there's a good chance he'll walk or at max serve a sentence of 50 years. Would you take the money or try your luck in court? Could you take the blood money? Does justice mean more to you? What if he only got 10 years in prison; would you take the money instead?
a legal system where having your victim shit in your face and you be raped by every animal in a 50-miles raidus isn't an acceptable sentence is not a good legal system
Well if you look at it the likelyhood of him going to jail is very low and even if he does go he could easily be placed in a minimum security facility which is no worse then house arrest, meanwhile, it would end up being a huge ordeal for yourself having to spend possibly years in courts while suffering emotionally the whole time. Justice would ultimately be impossible so you might as well take the money and try to live a life in a way your loved on could be proud of (unless that person is a very moral person and thus would find your actions pretty disgraceful). In the end they are dead you are not so you might as well get what you can.
Isn't vehicular homicide a felony in any case? So wouldn't the perp end up as defendant in a criminal prosecution case no matter what?
Originally Posted by coolpuprocks
The weakness of the hypothetical aside, one must always contrast expected risk with expected reward when making a decision. Thus we must specify what constitutes a "good chance", and how large the chance he'll walk is compared to the chance of being sentenced.
Our objective, morally speaking, should naturally coincide with the objective of a moral justice system at large, i.e. deterrence of crime, protection of citizens and easing the suffering of the victims. Therefore, the best outcome would probably be lifetime revocation of the perp's driver's license, as well as some goddamn hefty fines (say, 50-75% of net worth for a really rick fuck, not as if he's going to miss it much anyway) plus a good long time of community service. Despite the perp being a rich fuck, I still see little reason to send someone to federal pound-me-in-the-ass prison who isn't a danger to people at large, so length of sentence is immaterial to my reasoning.
However, if our choices are artificially narrowed down to slogging it through the courts to eventual victory or defeat (for the sake of argument, the probability of either case is assumed to be 50%) or accepting the million, I'd say to take the million and hope that the criminal prosecution nails the perp. Unfortunately you can't hire a star prosecutor in the way you can hire a star attorney, otherwise I'd do that. As the case is in the hypothetical, the moral way would be to use the money to help my family in any way possible.
Take the money and then use it to hire someone to kill the guy.
In USA: Go to court and make him go to jail + getting more money.
In civilised states (where his sentence is ONLY jail): Pressing more money out of him.
I wish America was civilised
Originally Posted by neruke
Saizou, is right on the matter about it being a felony. However, the person could get away scott free in court. If the person was close to me. I would fight in court until I pissed blood. If not, I would take the cash and screw it.
I think this question is flawed since homicide becomes a governmental matter and you have no legal rights in the case. Its between the prosecution which is usually an Assistant District Attorney vs. the accused and his/her legal team. Theres no way any respectable ADA would let a billionaire pay the family of a homicide victim to escape jail time or a trail. Or at least thats not how it works on Law and Order... =\
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On second thought, the entire scenario is somewhat bare-bones. What were the circumstances? Was it a pure accident, or was the driver drunk or intoxicated? Where will the trial be held? By judge or by jury?
More info would be required to form a reasonable opinion.