The Facts behind the Common Assault Charge
Our client, a middle-aged bank worker residing with her partner whom she had been married to for almost a decade. The accused returned home from work after picking up their daughter from day-care. After the victim attended to the child, he entered the kitchen where our client had been cooking, and a verbal argument ensued. The victim then entered the lounge room whilst our client cleaned around the house before it was alleged that she assaulted the victim by slapping him. The police were called to the house where a Domestic Violence Evidence in Chief (DVEC) was obtained from the victim. Our client was cautioned and placed under arrest, charged with the offence of common assault (domestic violence), pursuant to s61 of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW).
Our Submissions and the Court
Our firm made representations to the Police maintaining that while our client admitted to contacting the victim, it was not in the form of a slap, and that this action, which was demonstrated to the police by our client, was misrepresented in the police facts. We noted that this was a trivial matter and accordingly, sought to have charges withdrawn contingent upon our client consenting to an ADVO. We further noted that if this were not a possibility, our client would seek to dispute the police facts. In relation to this tapping motion.
Our submissions to Penrith Local Court comprised an early guilty plea, provided details of the relationship problems that our client and the victim had been experiencing, the effect of these circumstances upon the mental health of our client, and their contribution towards our client’s actions. We also noted that our client and the victim were enrolled in marriage counselling with intentions to resolve their issues and make ammends, and that our client had no prior criminal convictions. Upon our advice, our client also undertook an anger management program to avoid any further similar occurrences and for her own mental health and wellbeing. This was viewed favourably by the court. An apology letter was submitted to the court and a list of references highlighting the good character of our client.
Our legal team sought to have the charges dismissed, or alternatively, if this was not a possibility, then to have our client discharged without conviction upon a conditional release order. Our client received the more favourable outcome of a s10 dismissal under the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act 1999.