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The actus reus of assault is putting V in fear of immediate unlawful violence. The mens rea of assault
is intentionally or recklessly putting V in fear of immediate unlawful violence. In Ireland, silent phone
calls were enough for an assault, whilst words can remove an assault (Tubberville v Savage). There
threat of violence must also be immediate (smith v Woking Police).
The actus reus of battery is the application of unlawful force and the mens rea is intentionally or
recklessly applying unlawful force. The slightest touch is enough for battery (Thomas), and battery
can be committed either directly or indirectly (Fagan v MPC).
The actus reus of ABH is the D committing an assault of battery that results in actual bodily harm to
the V. The MR is intentionally or recklessly committing an assault or battery resulting in ABH. An ABH
injury is defined in Miller as "any injury that interferes with health or comfort". In Chan Fook, the level
of injury is described as being "more than trivial, less than serious" and also shows that ABH can
include psychiatric injuries that goes beyond fear, distress or panic. ABH is also a result crime. In
Roberts, D touched the V's clothes (battery) and made her fear rape (assault), that resulted in her
leaping from a car and suffering ABH injuries. Similarly in Savage, the D threw beer (battery) which
resulted in a minor cut to the V's wrist.
GBH section twenty
The actus reus of GBH section twenty is unlawful wounding or inflicting GBH on V. The mens rea is
intention or recklessness as to some harm. Unlawful wounding can be defined in Morarity v Brooks as
a "break to the second layer of the skin". Internal injuries do not amount to a wound (Eisenhower).
Grievous bodily harm means really serious harm (DPP v Smith). D only needs to intentionally or
recklessly want to cause some harm (Grimshaw) not necessarily section twenty. GBH is also
committed when serious disease is transmitted (Dica) and when serious psychiatric harm is caused
(Burstow). It can also happen through an omission.
GBH section eighteen.
The actus reus of this offence is unlawful wounding or inflicting GBH on V. The mens rea is
intentionally wounding or causing GBH. Unlawful wounding can be defined in Morarity v Brooks as a
"break to the second layer of the skin". Internal injuries do not amount to a wound (Eisenhower). In
Piff a footballer head butted an opponent in the face fracturing his cheek bone and eye socket. In
Belfon, D slashed V with razor blades causing severe wounds to face and chest.