Non Fatal Offences Evaluation

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  • Created by: Scragg
  • Created on: 29-04-16 12:05
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  • Non Fatal Offences Evaluation
    • Issues
      • "inefficient as a vehicle for controlling violence"
        • Law Commission (Offences Against the Person Act) 1993
      • Language
        • No definition of wording so case interpretation has led to inconsistent decision making
        • Old Fashioned language which is used inconsistently
          • Inflict and Caused defined in Ireland and Burstow
          • As a result it is easier to convict of a more serious offence than a minor one
          • Wounding is not given the normal definition
            • Charging Standards state that minor wounds should not be prosecuted but these are not law so can not bind a court
      • hierarchy of seriousness
        • There is no logical sentencing structure
          • HLA Hart as example
            • "Principles of justice or fairness between different offenders require morally distinguishable offences to be treated differently and morally similar offences to be treated alike"
        • Cross over between assault, battery and s47
        • Sentence for s47 and s20 is the same
      • Mens Rea
        • The punishment to the defendant does not match with the state of mind of the defendant at the time of the offence
          • Savage; Parmenter established that there is no addiction mens read required for the s47 than for an assault or battery
          • Mowatt, Do not need to intend or foresee the wound/ harm, it is enough for them to foresee that some harm might occur
      • Outdated
        • The legislation is a piece of victorian legislation and requires updating to better reflect the views of modern society and to use wording that people understand
          • Lord Steyn in Ireland and Burstow: "The Victorian legislator would not have in his mind psychiatric illness
        • law was so inefficient in some areas that new legislation had to be passed
          • E.G, in relation to stalking Parliament was forced to pass the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 as amended by the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012
        • The act has been stretched to deal with situations beyond its Capabilities
          • E.G, Dica
    • Reforms
      • All reforms from the Law Commission legislating the Criminal Code: Offences Against the Person and General Principles" 1993
        • Assault should be given a statutory definition
        • D must foresee the injury but not the battery which caused it
          • S47 is to be replaced with a new offence called "Intentionally or recklessly causing injury"
        • S20 to be replaced with a new offence, "Recklessly causing serious harm"
        • S18 to be replaced with a new offence, "Intentionally causing serious harm"
      • Issues with the reform
        • Assault is given its layman meaning i.e bot an assault and a battery
        • No definition of what serious means
        • What would be classed as an injury and what would be classed as an assault
        • "Serious" is not given a definition
          • Likely to have to go through the courts to define this
    • Answering as an essay
      • ODID Paragraph structure
        • O - Outline
        • D - Define
        • I - Identify
        • Discuss


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