January 8, 2018

Serious Assault Offences Case Studies

O’Brien Criminal and Civil Solicitors are expert assault lawyers. We have represented clients across a large variety of serious assault offences including assault occasioning actual bodily harm, assaulting causing grievous bodily harm and wounding. We have assisted clients in Local Court trials, District Court jury trials and sentencing hearings.

Here are a number of successful cases where O’Brien Criminal and Civil Solicitors have secured a favourable result for our clients.

Assault occasioning actual bodily harm

JDSuccessful legal arguments by lawyer to gain a ‘Not Guilty’ verdict in assault case

We represented JD at her trial for assault occasioning actual bodily harm. Our solicitor successfully argued that the prosecution was unable to establish their case given that the entirety of the alleged victim’s evidence was excluded from the trial. This case is a good example of our solicitors’ abilities in presenting successful legal arguments at trial.

SM – Good outcome in sentencing hearing for client

SM was charged with wounding a person with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and assaulting a police officer in the execution of duty. We represented SM in her case and successfully got the wounding charge withdrawn due to a strong self-defence case. She pleaded guilty to the assaulting a police officer charge in which we represented her at her sentencing hearing. We helped her achieve a good outcome of a conviction being recorded but no other penalty being given.

HXJ – Not guilty verdict in affray charge

Our client was in a dispute with another at a family gathering. The police alleged that HXJ punched the other person causing actual bodily harm. We represented HXJ in his trial for affray after the prosecution withdrew the charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm. Our solicitor successfully cross-examined the prosecution’s witnesses, raising doubt in light of their conflicting evidence. We helped HXJ achieve a not guilty outcome.

NJ –  Self-defence argument run leading to acquittal of assault charge.

Our client was charged with assaulting a man with the alleged victim claiming that NJ had hit him with a baseball bat. We represented NJ in his Local Court hearing, arguing that he had acted in self-defence and was therefore not guilty. Considering all the evidence from the witnesses, the Magistrate was not satisfied beyond reasonable doubt that NJ had not acted in self-defence. NJ was acquitted of the charge.

KAPreparation of pre-sentence report for university student

KA was a university student who became involved in a violent altercation with a security guard. She threw a glass bottle at the security guard which caused a laceration under his eye. She pleaded guilty to the charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm. We assisted KA in developing her pre-sentence report. The Magistrate took this into account and ordered that she perform community service work.

BD – Assault charges dismissed after complainant’s credibility was questioned

BD was charged with multiple assault offences towards his wife. He pleaded not guilty to all offences and we represented BD in his three day Local Court hearing. We argued that his wife had made the complaint with the ulterior motive of attempting to gain permanent residency after he had withdrawn his sponsorship for her visa. The charges were dismissed on the basis that there was no additional corroboration of the complainant’s evidence, and that there was an ulterior motive for the complainant to lie.

FH – Representation for security guard in his local court trial

Our client was charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm and breaching an AVO. A conviction against FH would have jeopardised his job as a security officer. He pleaded not guilty and his matter was heard in the Local Court. We assisted FH in getting the charges against him dismissed.

TS – Victim’s lack of credibility in trial results in not guilty verdict for client

An allegation of kidnapping and assault was made against TS to which he entered a plea of not guilty. After withdrawing the kidnapping charge, the prosecution proceeded to a two day trial on the charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm in company. The court found that the victim lacked credibility which left the court with reasonable doubt. TS was found not guilty.

WJP – Costs awarded after client found not guilty of assault charges

WJP was charged with two counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm. It was alleged that he and two others approached two young victims and used violence to take money off them. We represented WJP in his two day hearing in the Local Court. It was successfully argued that the complainants’ identification was vague and contradictory and therefore WJP could not be properly identified as one of the assailants who attacked the complainants. The Magistrate was not satisfied beyond reasonable doubt that WJP was involved in the offence. The Magistrate also ordered that the prosecution pay WJP’s legal expenses as the case was baseless from the outset.

FF – Assisted client in tendering of psychological report and good character references

The victim and FF were in a domestic relationship when FF was charged with multiple assault offences. The Police withdrew one of the charges with the other charges being heard at the Local Court. We made submissions that FF was of good character, and tendered a psychological report outlining his ongoing rehabilitation and anger management issues. The Magistrate conditionally dismissed the charge without recording a conviction.

Assault causing grievous bodily harm

RXC – Represented transgender client in sentencing hearing after guilty plea

During a physical altercation with the victim, RXC stabbed the victim with a kitchen knife. She was arrested and was charged with causing grievous bodily harm with intent. She pleaded guilty in the local court and was committed for referral in the District Court. We represented RXC in her sentencing hearing where we argued that time in prison would be harsher on her as her transgender status would require special kinds of assistance.

Reckless wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm

MFA – Client found not guilty on the basis of self-defence in two week trial

MFA and the complainant were former housemates. On the day of the incident, MFA returned to the house to collect his belongings but the two of them got into a physical struggle. The complainant was punching MFA and after telling the complainant to stop, the complainant continued to attack MFA. MFA stabbed the complainant in the back of the leg and called an ambulance and police. We represented MFA in a two-week jury trial, and assisted him with running the defence of self-defence. MFA was found not guilty and was acquitted.

Reckless Wounding

AVG – Reckless wounding charge withdrawn in joint criminal enterprise case

AVG was part of a group that started a brawl at a house party which resulted in one of the complainants suffering two shallow knife wounds. He was not the person wielding the knife, but was charged with reckless wounding under the rules of joint criminal enterprise. We assisted AVG in getting the charge of reckless wounding withdrawn by arguing that there was no evidence of AVG’s agreement to commit the offence.

CYL –  Client represented in sentencing hearing after pleading guilty

CYL was charged with reckless wounding in company after an altercation with the complainant. CYL pleaded guilty to the charge. We represented CYL in his sentencing hearing where the judge took into account that the Crown was not able to prove beyond reasonable doubt precisely how or by whom the wounds were inflicted.