Non-Fatal Offences Against the Person
Non-Fatal Offences Against the Person
Malicious Wounding/ Inflicting Grievous Bodily Harm S.20: "whosoever shall unlawfully and maliciously wound or inflict any GBH upon any other person, either with or without a weapon or instrument, shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable... to imprisonment for not more than 5 years"
Wound: a cut or break in the continuity of the whole skin. A cut of internal skin e.g. in the cheek is sufficient but internal bleeding isn't.
JJC v Eisenhower (1983): V was hit with a pellet in the eye which caused internal bleeding, but the skin was not broken so it is not sufficient for GBH.
Wood (1830): V's collar bone was broken but the skin was fine so no GBH.
Grievous Bodily Harm: It was held in DPP v Smith (1961) that GBH means 'really serious harm'. In Saundes (1985) It was held that it was permissible to direct a jury that there needs to be 'serious harm' (not including 'really')
Bollom (2004): D caused bruising to a 17 month old baby, his conviction of GBH was quashed to ABH but COA said that it would be different if he caused bruising to an adult.
Burstow (1997): V of a stalker suffered severe depression and it was held psychiatric harm is GBH.
Dica (2004): 1st ever conviction of GBH for purposely infecting victims with HIV by having unprotected sex with 2 women knowing he was positive for HIV.
Inflicting Grievous Bodily Harm s.20: this uses the term 'inflict' meaning there has to be a technical assault or battery. This term is quite wide as seen in Lewis (1974) where D shouted threats at V through a door and as a result she jumped out and broke both her legs making him guilty of GBH s.20.
Burstow (1997): the victim of a stalker suffered sever depression as a result and it was held that psychiatric harm can be GBH.
Mens Rea: it was held in Cunningham (1957) that 'maliciously' did not have require any ill will towards the person injured, it meant ; intention to cause that particular harm or reckless as to whether such harm would occur.
Parmenter(1991): D injured his 3 month old baby by tossing him in the air and catching him again, he said he didnt know it would cause harm as he done it to older children which was held as reckless. he was convicted of GBH but got ABH on appeal.
Common Assault: there are two ways of committing a common assault...
Assault: An act in which causes the victim to apprehend the infliction of immediate, unlawful force with either intention to cause another to fear immediate unlawful personal violence or reckless as to whether such fear is caused.
Actus Reus of Assault: There must be an act which causes the victim to apprehend the infliction of immediate unlawful force.
Constanza (1997): D wrote over 80 letters, last 2 seen as threats causing V to fear, D was liable of assault.
Ireland (1997): Silent phone calls were held as assault.
Smith v Chief Superintendent of Woking Police Station: D broke into V's garden and was looking through her window which caused her to fear. He was guilty even though immediate infliction could not be made.
Light (1857): D raised a sword and said 'if it wasnt for the police outside i would split your head open'. This was held an assault because V feared unlawful force would be used.
Tuberville v Savage(1669): D had one hand on the sword and said 'if it were not assize time, i would not take such language from you' . This was not held an assault because D showed he wasn't gong to do anything
Battery: The application of unlawful force to another person intending either to apply unlawful physical force to another or reckless as to whether unlawful force is applied.
Actus Reus of Battery: the application of unlawful force to another person. ('Force' is a misleading term!)
Collins v Wilcock (1984): D (police officer) was trying to get the identity of V (prostitute) and in doing so grabbed her arm and was guilty of battery.
Wood (Fraser) v DPP (2008): V threw an ashtray at (police officer) D and D grabbed his arm to get his identity and in doing so committed battery.
Fagan v Metropolitan Police Commander (1968): D parked his car on a police mans foot and did not notice, but when he did notice he did not move it and so then he committed battery.
Martin (1881): trapped the theatre door shut and turned off the lights, people ran to the door and got injured, this is battery.
DPP v K (1990): 15yrs D took acid from the science Dept and hid it in the bathroom dryer, V wanted to dry his hands and got burnt by the acid (sentence was quashed as there was no intention)
DPP v Santa-Bermudez (2003): V (police woman) asked D if there was anything sharp in his pockets that could injure her, he said no and then she got cut with a needle, this was battery.
A v UK (1998): Jury acquitted a father who beat his son with a garden cane, this goes against European Convention of Human Rights.
Mens Rea of Assault and Battery: Intention or Recklessness are sufficient for both assault and battery.
DPP v Majewski (1976): D was drunk and attacked his landlord and police, this was held as a common assault because drinking was reckless and so accounts for the mens rea
Wounding or Causing Grievous Bodily Harm with Intent s.18: "whosoever shall unlawfully and maliciously by any means whatsoever cause any GBH to any person with intent to cause GBH to any person, or with intent to resist or prevent the lawful apprehension or detainer of any person, shall be guilty of an offence"
Mens Rea: this is a specific intent offence. The D must be proved to have intended to; cause GBH or resist or prevent the lawful apprehension or detainer or anyone. Intention to wound is not sufficient here.
Taylor(2009):V had scratches and a stab wound to his back but there was no evidence to show D intended to wound V so conviction was quashed.
Morrison (1989): V (police officer) tried to arrest D who then jumped through a window taking V with him causing injuries to V. The jury had to see either intention or recklessness for him to be guilty under s.18
Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm s.47: an assault or battery which causes ABH with the intention to cause the victim to fear or to be subjectively reckless as to whether the victim fears or is subjected to unlawful force.
Actus Reus of ABH
T v DPP (2003): D and others chased and kicked V unconscious for a moment. This was held as ABH
DPP v Smith (Michael)(2006): D argued with GF (V) and cut off her pony tail which was held to be a substantial amount of her hair and ABH.
Chan Fook (1994):Psychiatric injury can count as ABH.
Burstow (1997): 'Bodily Harm' should recognise psychiatric illness.
Mens Rea of ABH: the defendant must intend or be subjectively reckless as to whether the victim fears or is subjected to unlawful force.
Roberts (1971): D tried to take V's coat off in a moving car so she feared and jumped out and he was convicted ABH because of her injuries. He was reckless to the fear he caused.
Savage (1991): D threw beer over V but glass slipped cutting V's hand. D got ABH as he was reckless.