Assault covers a number of offences, all of which are characterised by a person coming into unwanted physical contact with another person. In general, the seriousness of the charge depends on the injuries sustained during the alleged assault.
If you have been charged for any of the following offences, our assault solicitors can help by representing you:
- Assault by beating
- Common Assault
- Assault occasioning actual bodily harm (“ABH”)
- Assault occasioning grievous bodily harm (“GBH”)
- Assault occasioning grievous bodily harm with intent (“GBH with intent”)
What do each of these charges mean?
Common Assault – The Criminal Justice Act 1988 states that Common Assault is the least serious assault charge in the UK. These charges can only be heard in a local Magistrates Court. Physical contact does not necessarily have to be involved. Simply causing fear from serious intent of assault will be enough to enforce these charges, though it will be of course more severe if physical harm is caused during the attack. This will then be classed as battery.
Actual Bodily Harm (ABH) – According to the Offences Against the Person Act 1861, ABH charges can either be heard at a Magistrates or a Crown Court depending on the severity. In order to be charged for ABH, serious injuries must be alleged to have been caused to the victim. According to the law, there must be actual, extensive and visible bodily harm.
Grievous Bodily Harm (GBH) – According to the Offences against the Person Act 1861 Section 20 this can be heard in either a Magistrates or a Crown Court. This can be both physical, with extensive and serious harm including broken bones or internal injury, or the purposeful transmission of a disease or causing alleged psychological damage to the victim.
Causing Grievous Bodily Harm (GBH) with intent – This offence can only be heard in the Crown Court. This is the most serious assault offence that can be committed in the UK. It requires the Prosecution to prove that grievous bodily harm (GBH) was intentionally caused to the victim.
Even if no injury has been sustained, the charge of assault and/or battery can still be pursued, so it’s important you seek legal assistance to defend your case.
What sentence could you face for Battery or Assault?
Dependent on your previous record and the result of the current charges, these can stay on your criminal record for a long time so its imperative you have someone in your corner who will do their best to minimise the charges you face. There is a real chance of a prison sentence from 6 months for common assault, to several years for more serious charged.
How can IMS Law assist you?
As specialist criminal law solicitors, IMS Law can support you throughout your case. We will be there to help you from the first step to the last, as it is imperative that you seek legal advice as soon as possible and maintain this throughout your case. Failing to hire an assault solicitor could jeopardise your position, and we understand how deeply these charges can affect you personally.
As a long-standing team of specialist solicitors in St.Helens, we have experience in defending domestic violence cases as well as many other types of assault. If you face assault charges of any kind, please call us now, or get in touch with us here for urgent legal assistance.