Assault can range from physical contact involving a push to more serious forms of conduct resulting in injuries. Generally, an assault occurs when a person intentionally applies direct or indirect force to another person without consent.
Common Types of Assault and Related Offences:
- Domestic Assault
- Assault Causing Bodily Harm
- Aggravated Assault
- Threatening Death
- Sexual Assault (Sexual Touching & Indecent Acts)
- Assault with a Weapon
Defences to Assault
For an assault to have occurred, the Crown must prove that the application of force by the accused person was done without the consent of the party to whom the force was applied. Consent may be given expressly or implied. Often, consent is implied and is generally determined from the surrounding circumstances of the offence.
A person may be justified in using force or threatening force in certain circumstances to protect either themselves, family members or property. The rule permits the use of force – if the force is reasonable depends on the facts of the case.
Mistaken Belief in Consent
If consent did not actually exist, the accused may still be able to argue that they honestly believed the other party had consented to the application of force. An honest but mistaken belief in consent will also afford a defence to an assault charge.
What are the Penalties for an Assault Charge
The consequences of being found guilty of an assault charge are significant. Upon a finding of guilt, one may receive a criminal record and be sentenced to a period in jail. Alternatively, the court may impose a lesser sentence including probation with counselling or a fine.
We have the experience, resources and tools required to provide you with the most effective legal defence, often not resulting in a criminal record. It is important to remember that every allegation of theft, fraud or robbery is a fact specific inquiry. Consulting a lawyer will assist you with identifying potential defences to this type of allegation.