Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Anatomy of a Horror Setting #6: Body of Evidence

Learning important crime fighting, terrorist thwarting, and life saving information by the use of psychic powers is great if it can be done. It could be a vital and vibrant part of the criminal incarceration process. It would put the right people in the right position to best defuse situations, and prevent loss of life at many levels of scale. Once the bad guys are stopped then comes the next stage. That stage is putting the villains away in jail for a long time, or depending on what almost happened a well deserved death sentence. Here is where the powers of psychics may come up incredibly short. It is not necessary that they fail, but that determination can be hard even if good sets of procedures and laws are put in place to accommodate for this new information stream.

In some cases the use of a psychic power, like for instance precognition, will lead to the discovery of hard, easily understood and established, evidence. Such an example could be explosive devices and building schematics. Is that evidence admissible in a court of law though? When does a psychic have the right to invade the privacy of another individual? That question should be answered in the world that has verifiable psychics that are recognised by the powers that be. However, what happens in a world where the psychics aren't recognised, and/or are in hiding? Right here the distinction should be made, that for a horror setting, that the psychics in question indeed are hiding, and therefore their knowledge is of no value to a court or a jury, directly.

How then does a psychic go about putting their information to use? The answer to that is that there are many different options. There is of course the eponymous anonymous tip. The psychic could be a police informant, having proven themselves to, likely, an individual officer, or a prosecutor. What happens though when there is no physical evidence? How then does a psychic go about preventing a disaster? Let's say the psychic has a vision that a neighbour is going to snap and kill his wife with a baseball bat. Until the neighbour is about to commit the crime there is no crime as far as the law is concerned. Even if the neighbour is a wife beater the police can't do anything until they catch him being violent, which will generally be too late. This is especially true if the psychic cannot nail down a time for the event.

Mood: stressed.
Music: My Global Mind by Queensryche and Picture Elvis by Moist.

Queensryche: Promised Land
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Moist: Silver

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