Assault - Criminal Defence SolicitorsAssault involves the infliction of physical force or the causing of the fear of physical contact. Assault is unlawful where it occurs without a lawful justification. O’Brien Criminal and Civil Solicitors are expert trial advocates and defence assault lawyers. We have represented clients in assault offences of all kinds.

Common assault

Police charge someone with common assault where they assault another person but do not cause an injury amounting to actual bodily harm or grievous bodily harm. Common assault can include actions such as:

  • punching, hitting or kicking another person without causing bodily harm,
  • spitting at another person
  • or the mere threat of hurting another person.

If you are convicted for a common assault you will receive a criminal record. However, the Magistrate hearing your case may use their discretion to record a no conviction.

Assaulting and/or Resisting Police

There are specific offences and different penalties that apply to assaults and/or resisting police officers. For example, cases of resisting police include:

  • running away from police who are trying to arrest you;
  • struggling with police who are trying to arrest you
  • or lying to police.

This is a summary offence and goes before the Local Court for a hearing.

Assaults causing Bodily Harm

More serious assaults include but are not limited to:

  • Assault occasioning actual bodily harm (ABH);
  • Reckless wounding;
  • Reckless grievous bodily harm (GBH);
  • Intent to cause grievous bodily harm (GBH);
  • Wounding with intent;
  • Assault causing death;
  • Sexual assault

assault battery bodily harm punchThe severity of the charge(s) and potential sentences differ depending on the nature of the circumstances. These include:

  • the seriousness of injuries sustained by the victim,
  • presence of weapons
  • and presence of co-offenders.

The law refers to these as aggravating factors.

For example, see previous cases in relation to more serious assaults that our solicitors have handled.

What is affray?

Affray is a criminal offence where you use, or threaten to use, unlawful violence towards others. Consequently, that conduct causes ordinary persons who may not be involved in the original interaction to fear for their safety.

Police lay a charge of affray when someone behaves in a manner in public that would cause others to fear for their safety. The courts consider affray as a more serious than a common assault. Therefore it carries a heavier penalty.

One notorious case of affray was the one that occurred at Sydney Airport’s domestic terminal in March 2009. After that incident six Comancheros bikies faced charges, including affray, over the fatal brawl. It is also common to see prosecutors lay the charge of riot associated with affray.

Why get assault lawyers on your side?

O’Brien Criminal and Civil Solicitors assault lawyers have successfully helped clients receive a no conviction record. Read here to find out more about these assault cases.

Contact our assault lawyers now

Speak to one of our expert criminal defence assault lawyers to determine what your best course of action is.



O’Brien Criminal & Civil Solicitors
p: 02 9261 4281
a: Level 4, 219-223 Castlereagh St,
Sydney NSW 2000

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