Different Assault offences.
Assault offences, offences involving violence, or what are sometimes called offences against the person are divided into categories. The offences vary in seriousness. They have different maximum penalties.
Factors effecting the seriousness of an offence include:
• The extent of the harm or injury. A Common Assault can occur without injury. Grievous Bodily Harm involves very serious injuries.
• An intention to cause harm. Intention to cause the result is not something the prosecution must prove for most assault offences in Queensland. Some more serious assault offences include an element of an intention to cause harm.
• The context in which the offence occurred. Domestic violence assault are viewed very seriously. So are assaults in licenced premises or road rage events.
• The type of assault. The use of a weapon, multiple blows or striking a person on the ground increase an offences seriousness. The penalties for spitting on a police or ambulance office can be very harsh.
Defending an Assault Allegation.
An assault charge is no more than an allegation the prosecution must prove beyond reasonable doubt.
Your defence might involve issues of fact. For example, that the event never occurred, that you were not the person involved, or that the complainant was the aggressor.
Your defence might involve issues of law. There are a number of available legal defences.
Often a defence will involve both issues of law and fact. Prosecution witnesses must be challenged in cross-examination to establish the possibility a person was provoked or acting in self- defence as a matter of fact before the law can apply.