Violent criminal is laughing all the way to the clink

IT IS of course the season of goodwill to all men, but even so, the sentence handed out to thuggish strangulation robber Tommy Puhlhoffer seemed to be sprinkled with rather too much seasonal cheer. When a violent young man who terrified his victims by u

IT IS of course the season of goodwill to all men, but even so, the sentence handed out to thuggish 'strangulation robber' Tommy Puhlhoffer seemed to be sprinkled with rather too much seasonal cheer.

When a violent young man who terrified his victims by using a claw hammer in his attacks, while threatening to harm babies, leaps around the dock in celebration when his sentence is announced, it is the clearest possible indication that justice has not been seen to be done.

Let's remember that Puhlhoffer showed absolutely no concern for the physical well-being of the women he robbed.

What must his vulnerable victims think of the sentence which means that this violent and dangerous young man will almost certainly be back on the streets by the time he is 25?


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Will those women, who must confront the psychological scars of their ordeal for many years to come, sleep any easier in their beds as the result of the legal process they have just witnessed?

Is there even a glimmer of hope that Puhlhoffer will change his ways in the meantime, before he is released back into society?

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If anything, the lightness of the sentence will probably make him even more contemptuous of the law - though that is difficult to imagine in his case, since he received his first jail sentence at the age of 12 and has also been convicted of his part in two robberies. In one of these a security guard was stabbed and in the other, a policeman was shot at.

And what must the police officers who worked so tirelessly and meticulously on this case think? When they successfully bring violent offenders to court and when those suspects are convicted, it is vital that the courts hand out strong penalties - not sentences which are scoffed at by the unrepentant perpetrators.

It is an absolute shame, and an affront to common decency, that Puhlhoffer was able to laugh all the way to the clink.

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