Is the “Double Jeopardy” Law Absurd?

12 09 2008
Signing my oathImage by David McLean via Flickr

When someone has been charged with a crime and prosecuted, they cannot be charged again for the same offense. They can be charged for a lesser offense or a different offense but not for the same crime.

The double jeopardy rule arises from the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution, the relevant clause of which reads

nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb

This also applies to military people who are not under civilian laws… they are under the UCMJ or the Uniform Code of Military Justice. They can be tried in a civilian court OR a military court but not both for the same crime.

I think this is absurd NOT. Otherwise a person could get tried over and over again until prosecutors got the win. We have seen many times where prosecutions are rigged with all kinds of illegal activity and fraud. THis is a measure to protect citizens. It backfires sometimes when obvious criminals get out of jail like the murder OJ who was acquitted in criminal court and convicted in civil court.

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