Teacher resources

Preparation

Prior to the activity print the following on different coloured card or paper

Consider the information – The police version

(Explain to learners that the police in this situation make allegations about the crime.)

Divide the learners into groups and allocate to each group a penalty card.

Have each group consider the information and whether or not their penalty card is appropriate.

Each group can appoint a recorder to record findings and another to report back to the class. The class may or may not reach an agreed position as to the appropriate consequence through their discussion.

Consider the information – The defence version

(Explain to learners that the defence gives background information about the character of the accused, explanations for the offending and other relevant information. It is common for both sides to discuss the matter before they go to court.)

Have the same groups consider the information and whether the penalty card is appropriate.

Using the same process as above, each group then reports back to the class.

Conclusion – Whole class questions

Ask the whole class to consider the following questions:

  • Did members of the class change their attitude to consequences after they considered the defence version?
  • Why?
  • What conclusions can be drawn from this?

Consequence Cards - Template 3

Consequence Cards (Template 3) Consequence Cards - Template3.docx [31KB] Consequence Cards - Template3.pdf [61KB]
 

How would you decide?

Aim:
To determine a consequence, giving reasons for your decision.
Resources:
Fact sheet 5: The sentencing process
Fact sheet 6: Sentencing – Factors a court considers
Consequence card allocated by your teacher
Consider the information – the police version
Consider the information – the defence version
 
Background
 
Refer to Fact sheets 5 and 6 on The sentencing process.
 

Activity 1 

  1. In groups read Consider the information – the police version. What is the role of the police before sentencing occurs?
  2. Using the Fact sheets, identify any important factors you need to consider to decide whether the penalty card that your group has is appropriate.
  3. If your group thinks another penalty is more appropriate than the one on your card, which of these would you consider:
    • imprisonment for up to two years
    • a suspended sentence (the promise of imprisonment if he commits another crime in a given period of time)

      a bond with conditions (entering into a promise)

      a fine (order to pay money)
    • compensation (paying someone for the damage or loss, such as the amount needed to repair or replace something)
    • community service (supervised work such as cleaning graffiti, collecting rubbish).
  1. Appoint a recorder to record findings and another to report back to the class.
  2. As a class, try to reach a common position about a suitable penalty.

Activity 2

  1. In groups read Consider the information – the defence version. What is the role of the defence before sentencing occurs?
  2. What penalty does your group now believe is most appropriate?
  3. Appoint a recorder to record findings and another to report back to the class.
  4. As a class, try to reach a common position about whether the penalty decided earlier is still appropriate or whether another penalty is more suitable.

Class discussion

  1. Did you change your attitude to the consequences after you considered the defence version?
  2. Why?
  3. What conclusions could be drawn from this?

Consider the information – the police version

John is 23 and is charged with obtaining money dishonestly. He has a serious drug problem and has been sharing a house with other drug users.

He stole a Driver’s Licence renewal form from Brian, another person living in the house, and used it to obtain a Driver’s Licence in Brian’s name but with his own photo on it.

Using the Driver’s Licence, he obtained a new credit card in Brian’s name (claiming his was lost).

Using the credit card, John withdrew $3600 from Brian’s bank account.

He used the money to buy drugs.

When questioned by police he refused to cooperate.

The bank wants John to pay back the money.

At first, John says he did not commit the crime. Once shown the fake Licence application he owns up and tells all.

Background information

Until two years ago he had no criminal history. In the past two years, however, he has had three convictions for using or possessing drugs and two convictions for minor offences of stealing to get money for drugs.

He also has a number of traffic convictions.

Consider the information – the defence version

John is admitting the crime.

He lied to police because he was scared. By the end of his interview he had owned up fully.

Brian had sold John’s car to get money for drugs. John was trying to get even as well as get his money back.

John didn’t realise the bank would be the loser, thinking it would be Brian instead.

John says he is sorry and will pay back the money to the bank but needs time to do this.

He has not committed any further offences although still on drugs. John has a girlfriend who is employed and prepared to help him. She is not on drugs and they now live at her parent’s home.

His girlfriend and her parents have known of his drug problems and are prepared to support him.

John is keen to kick his drug habit but needs help. He feels if he can kick the habit he can find work again.