Assault Lawyers for Reckless Wounding and Recklessly Cause Grievous Bodily Harm
Reckless wounding and recklessly causing grievous bodily harm are covered by section 35 of the NSW Crimes Act.
The section makes it an offence to wound or cause grievous bodily harm to another person through actions that are ‘reckless’.
You would be reckless if you knew that a possible consequence of your actions was that a wound or a serious injury could occur to another person.
A ‘wound’ is any injury that breaks through both layers of the skin.
It includes any deep cuts, split lip or pulling out of hair that causes bleeding.
‘Grievous bodily harm’ is injury of a very serious kind.
It can include serious bone breaks, damage to organs, passing of a serious disease, permanent facial disfigurement, permanent loss of vision and killing an unborn child.
The maximum penalty for reckless wounding is 7 years imprisonment.
The maximum increases to 10 years imprisonment if the offence occurs in the company of others.
The maximum penalty for recklessly cause grievous bodily harm is 10 years imprisonment, or 14 years in company.
The case can be dealt with in the Local Court or District Court.
If it stays in the Local Court, the maximum penalty for all offences is 2 years imprisonment.
Pleading Not Guilty
If you don’t agree with the allegations, it is important for your assault lawyer to fight for the case to be dropped.
This can be done by:
- Obtaining any statements and materials that support your case,
- Writing and advising the prosecution of inconsistencies and other weaknesses in the case against you,
- Advising the prosecution that you have a valid defence, and
- Pressing for the withdrawal of the case.
If the prosecution refuses, your criminal lawyer should be experienced at winning assault cases similar to yours.
Your lawyer can advise you if any of the following defences apply:
This is when you are defending yourself, another person or property from an aggressor or thief.
This may occur in a fight situation where you are being attacked, are on the ground with your eyes closed and are punching and kicking to protect yourself.
In such a case, you may not be intending to connect but just trying to get the attacker/s away.
The act of punching and kicking would, however, amount to recklessness.
This is when you are in an emergency situation and commit the alleged offence to get away.
For example, if you are being attacked by a group of people and push members of the public out of the way when trying to escape, causing them to fall and be wounded or suffer grievous bodily harm.
This is when you are forced to commit the offence.
For example, if someone threatens to kill you unless you wound another.
If you wish to plead guilty, any of the following penalties may apply:
Non Conviction Order
This means that you are guilty but the court does not impose a criminal conviction upon you.
The court will look a range of matters when deciding whether to grant a ‘section 10 dismissal or conditional release order’ – including the incident itself, the lead-up to the incident, your general character and your personal circumstances
This means that you will have to pay a sum of money.
You will need to pay the fine within 28 days unless you apply at the court office for extra time to pay.
Good behaviour bond
This means that you cannot commit any further offences for the duration of the bond.
The bond may have additional conditions, such as seeing a Community Corrections officer and complying with their directions.
Community service order
This means that you must undertake a specific number of hours of unpaid work over a 12 month period.
The maximum is 500 hours.
Intensive correction order
This means that you come under the supervision of the Department of Corrections and are required to undertake 32 hours of community service work per month.
You may also be required to undertake rehabilitation programs, attend conferences and be subjected to urinalysis and monitoring.
Intensive correction orders can last up to 2 years.
This means that you must generally stay at home for the duration of your sentence, subject to exclusions such as approved work or attending medical appointments or counseling.
Home detention orders can last up to 18 months.
This is when you are sentenced to a period of imprisonment, but are not actually sent to prison as long you comply with any conditions and do not commit any further offences.
Suspended sentences can last up to 2 years.
Full time prison
This is when you are sent to gaol.
Full time imprisonment can only be imposed if no other alternative is appropriate in the circumstances.
Call our experienced criminal lawyers today for a free first appointment where we can discuss your case and advise you of the best way forward.
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