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Kirwans' Paul Wood weighs into the debate over Steven Gerrard's not guilty verdict; OPINION.

STEVEN GERRARD'S trial provoked two vastly opposing reactions from the red and blue halves of the city.

The prosecution had CCTV footage of the incident where Mr Gerrard allegedly assaulted Marcus McGee, which appeared to support their case in court.

After a four-day trial the Liverpool jury returned a not guilty verdict in just 75 minutes.

So what message does it send out when armed with clear-cut footage the prosecution cannot get a conviction? The answer is that the jury system works. The issue for them was whether Gerrard was acting in self defence and if so, was the force he used reasonable, considering all of the circumstances? If he genuinely believed that he was going to be assaulted, the law allows him to defend himself and this was the defence's argument.

The footage showed an unpleasant incident which no law-abiding person would want to be involved in and it may well have lost Gerrard some admirers.

But once self defence is claimed it is for the prosecution to prove beyond reasonable doubt that it was not in fact self defence.

Clearly, the jury was not satisfied beyond reasonable doubt and returned the not guilty verdict.

And in these circumstances, this must be a correct verdict.


Paul Wood
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Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:Aug 4, 2009
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