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Assault & Battery

If you are facing accusations of assault or battery then the specialist criminal law solicitors at Minton Morrill can advise you on your options, including whether or not to plead guilty.

Many people assume that assault means to hit or attack someone else. In fact, assault in itself is defined as the threat of force or violence, but does not have to involve physical contact or any physical harm.

When physical contact is involved, this becomes the offence of battery. This is defined as applying unlawful force to someone without their consent and can cover a wide range of actions, from kissing or spitting through to punching or kicking.

If an assault is particularly serious and results in injury then an offence of causing actual bodily harm (ABH) may have been committed. ABH, also known as a section 47 assault, covers injuries which are not regarded as particularly serious, such as minor cuts, bruises, grazes and scratches, although it can include harm to someone’s mental health caused by threats being made against them.

More serious still is the offence of causing grievous bodily harm (GBH). This is divided into two specific offences: wounding with intent (also known as a section 18 assault) and wounding without intent (also known as a section 20 assault). Wounding generally refers to more serious injuries such as deep cuts or broken bones. If there was no intent to cause GBH, the case can be heard in either the magistrates’ or the Crown Court. However, a section 18 GBH case can only be dealt with by the Crown Court.

Sentences for assault vary depending on which end of the scale the act falls in – the more serious the assault, the more severe the sentence. Having the right legal representation at the earliest opportunity can mean the difference between a community order and a prison sentence.

If you are facing an assault or battery charge then it is vital to seek expert legal advice before entering any sort of plea. At Minton Morrill, our specialist criminal law solicitors are highly experienced in defending clients in a wide range of assault cases and may be able to put forward an argument of self defence, provided reasonable force was used. Alternatively, there may be cases where, depending on the circumstances, it can be argued that injury was caused accidentally.

To find out how our specialist assault and battery solicitors in Leeds, Yorkshire and the North of England can help you, please contact us.

 

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