Non Fatal Offences Against the Person

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  • Created by: bananaaar
  • Created on: 28-04-15 20:29
Where is assault sentenced?
Section 39 Criminal Justice Act 1988.
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Actus reus of assault?
Apprehension of immediate and unlawful violence
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MR of assault?
Intention or subjective recklessness as to whether such apprehension is caused.
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Actions or words or both [Collins v Wilcock] [Fagan]. Can include communication or silence [Ireland] [Constanza]
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D wrote 800 letters and made phone calls to V. Last 2 letters seen as threats by victim. As assault occurred due to fear of violence.
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Max sentence of assault/battery?
Six months prison or a fine of £5,000.
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Silent phone calls were made and assault occurred by silence.
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D killed friend with revolver containing 2 bullets but both believed it would not fire. No assault as friend did not fear violence and D believed no bullet would be fired.
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Does not mean fear, it means expectation. [Lamb] [Smith]
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[Smith v Chief Superintendent]
D looked through woman window late at night. She was scared thinking D would break in. There was an assault even though D was outside as woman believed that what D would do was likely to be violent.
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Immediate violence?
If D accompanies threat with something that indicates that no violence will take place then there is no assault. [Turberville v Savage]
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[Turberville v Savage]
D put hand on sword saying if judges weren't in town then he would act differently. The words nullified the assault of having hand on sword.
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AR of battery?
Application of unlawful force on V. [Collins v Wilcocks]
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The slightest touch is enough.
[Collins v Wilcocks]
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Touching of clothes is sufficient
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Act may be continuing
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Act may be indirect
[Haystead] [Martin] [Dpp v K]
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Liability can occur by omissions
[DPP v Santa-bermudez]
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MR of battery?
Intention or subjective recklessness as to whether unlawful force is applied.
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Consent may be express or implied.
[Collins v Wilcocks]
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[Collins v Wilcocks]
Police asked woman to get into car for questioning but she walked off. Officer grabbed woman arm and she scratched him. Conviction of assaulting officer quashed. Officer held arm unlawfully as no arrest and woman entitled to get free.
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D rubbed hem of woman skirt. D's conviction was upheld as touching clothes was same as touching a person.
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When D directed to park by policeman when of car went onto officers foot. Asked to move but D turned engine off for several minutes. AR occurred when D drove onto foot. MR occurred when decided not to move an offence completed when turned off engine.
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D punched woman who let go of child she was holding and child was injured by fall. D liable as he was reckless as to whether act would injure child.
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D placed bar across theatre doorway, turned off lights and shouted 'fire'. Several people injured. D was convicted even though he did not touch anyone directly.
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[Dpp v K]
D was a school boy who stole acid and hid it in hot hand drier used by another boy who was burned. D's conviction quashed but divisional court QBD said that battery could be indirect.
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[DPP v Santa-bermudez]
Policewoman asked if she had sharp objects before search. D said not but policewoman injured by needle in pocket. Failure of D to tell officer created dangerous situation thus was liable for battery.
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What act is ABH under?
S. 47 OAPA 1861.
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AR of ABH?
Technical assault or battery occasioning actual bodily harm.
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Crime of basic intent. Intention or subjective recklessness. Not necessary to prove foresight of ABH, only needed to intend/be reckless of assault/battery. No foresight of ABH is required [Savage] [Parmenter]
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Must cause ABH [Roberts]
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ABH definition?
Defined in [Miller] as 'Any hurt or injury calculated to interfere with health or comfort of the victim.'
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A short lack of consciousness is sufficient
[T v DPP] [Smith]
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Psychiatric harm is capable of amounting to ABH but only if supported by medical evidence and not mere emotions
[Chan Fook] [Burstow] [Morris] [Dhaliwali]
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D tried to remove coat of female hitchhiker in car. She jumped out at 30mph and suffered cuts and bruises. D convicted as intended to apply unlawful force and no MR needed for resulting ABH.
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Any hurt or injury calculated to interfere with the health or comfort of the victim. Need not be permanent but must be more than transient and trifling.
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[T v DPP]
Loss of consciousness, even momentarily, was held to be ABH.
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[DPP v Smith]
D cut off girlfriends ponytail during argument. Held that cutting substantial amount of hair was sufficient to ABH.
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[Chan Fook]
D interrogated V, and locked him in a room. In order to escape, student tied curtains round pole. Pole broke and student fell to ground. No medical evidence was produced to support finding of psychiatric injury. Fear and panic are not included in ABH
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D bombarded V with unwanted attention for 3 years. The question was whether depressive symptoms by V amounted to ABH. It was held that Bodily Harm must be interpreted to include recognisable psychiatric illness.
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Evidence of psychological harm must be from psychiatrist (not a GP).
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Psychological symptoms that of no amount to a recognised psychiatric illness do not constitute Bodily Harm.
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D threw beer over woman in pub but glass slipped out of hand. D convicted as no mens rea for harm but intended to apply unlawful force.
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Statute for GBH
S20 OAPA 1861
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AR of s20
Malicious wounding [Eisenhower] or inflicting grievous bodily harm (serious harm [Smith] [Saunders] [Bollom]) This includes psychiatric harm [Burstow] and biological harm [Dica] [Goulding]
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V shot in eye with shotgun pellet causing severe bleeding under skin. Wasn't a wound as a wound is 'breaking in all the layers of the continuity of the skin'.
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Held that there was no real difference in the terms serious and really serious.
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[Bollom] GBH depends on age and health.
D convicted when 17 month old child suffering bruises on abdomen, arms and legs. D convicted of more serious offence due to age of victim.
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D infected 2 women with HIV after having unprotected sex. D did not say he was HIV positive. Offence can occur as it is classed as biological harm.
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D guilty of intentionally transmitting herpes.
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No different to s18's cause. [Clarence]
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[Clarence] Definition of inflict?
D had intercourse with his wife knowing he had gonorrhoea. Conviction quashed as there was no technical assault as women had consented to sex due to marriage. Originally inflict was interpertted to mean there had to be assault/battery.Now same as s18
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Max sentence?
5 years.
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MR of s20?
Intention or subjective recklessness [Savage]. Must only have foresight of some harm [Mowatt]
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Held that D must only foresee the risk of some harm. The modified test was approved in [Parmenter] and [savage].
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D broke V's collarbone. No break in skin and so no wound. But it could be GBH.
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D shouted threats at wife through locked door which he relied to break down. She jumped through window breaking both legs. D convicted as technical assault lead to serious harm.
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AR of section 18
Malicious wounding or causing GBH.
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Same as section 20, serious harm [Smith]. Physical harm, psychiatric harm [Burstow] [Ireland], biological harm [Dica].
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Mens rea of S20.
Intention to cause GBH. An intent to merely commit a wound is insufficient.
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Max sentence of S18?
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Police officer grabbed D to arrest him but D leapt through window, dragging officer, who was badly cut by glass. D convicted as either intended injury or realised risk of it occurring and took risk.
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Reform proposals for OAPA? 1998 Home Office Consultation Document; Violence, Reforming OAPA
Intentionally causing serious injury. Recklessly causing serious injury. Intentionally or recklessly causing serious injury. Assault - intentionally/recklessly applying force or cause other to believe any such force is imminent.
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Actus reus of assault?


Apprehension of immediate and unlawful violence

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MR of assault?


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