What is the likely sentence for common assault involving road rage?

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paradisekidd | 11:49 Thu 28th Feb 2008 | Criminal
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If found guilty by the magistrates (when pleading not guilty) of common assault causing minor injuries to an off duty police officer, in the alleged context of road rage, what is the likley sentence? Would factors such as current studying for a degree, volunteering with young offenders and volunteering as a counsellor, or having a baby on the way be relevant to reduce or remove the risk of a custodial sentence?


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Magistrates' sentencing guidelines for Common Assault show a starting point (for a first time offender pleading not guilty) of a Community penalty.

So unless there are aggravating features to the offence a custodial sentence is unlikely.
Assault on police officer ...custody starting point

If this victim was not apparently a police officer, was in ordinary clothes and 'off duty' and not acting as a police officer at the time then there's no aggravating factor in their being a police officer .If so , you can forget that aspect

Being 'road rage' doesn't help ! But you're not likely to get a custodial. The mitigation from character (degree study, volunteering etc) should, if possible, be supported by some documentary evidence. If you have some fine upstanding person to speak in court as to how well they know you and what your good character is , that the offence is out of character etc that helps too !
Fred is quite right, annlinda - i thought you knew better. The assault has to take place whilst the constable is executing his/her duty.
A policeman is always deemed to be on duty and should an offence or problem occur within his presence he is duty bound to act accordingly, usually after identifying himself as a policeman
Sorry newjudge...sat on similar case while ago...
I think the key word, annlinda, is �in the execution of his duty� (Police Act 1996 S89).

It seems that paradisekidd has been charged with Common Assault and it therefore follows that the CPS decided that although his victim was a police officer, the offence did not take place in the execution of his/her duty.

The appropriate starting point for Common Assault is a Community Penalty and the defence would no doubt argue (probably successfully) that even if the victim made it known that he/she was a police officer it does not aggravate the offence sufficiently to cross the custody threshold.
Interesting that now we have charge of Assault by beating on listings not common assault.......
Annlinda, you are not alone in thinking that about 'assault be beating ' that is 'battery' , on lists and as a charge Why, we don't have an offence of 'battery occasioning actual bodily harm' !.It may be that somewhere in the reporting of crime statistics the authorities require this strange condescending into particulars. More likely , someone with no knowledge of practice has been looking in the law books. Fagan v Metropolitan Police Commissioner [1969] Q.B. 439 does, apparently, say in passing that strictly, assault is an independent offence and should be treated as such, but you'd be hard pressed to find a practitioner in the Crown Courts who'd ever seen a count for 'battery' [Statement of Offence: Battery, contrary to s39 of the Criminal Justice Act 1988. Particulars of Offence : A B on the -day of - - , assaulted J N by beating him ] on an indictment.
It's a long time since I have done any crime, but I understood there were two ways of committing the actus reus of common assault. One is by the victim apprehending the fear of immediate unlawful violence (ie no contact necessary), the other is by the application of any unlawful force - ie battery. Normally "charged as x did on date assault y by beating"

But I am probably completely wrong and that's why I don't do crime anymore!!!
In that case, Barmaid, you'll remember those questions about the prisoner scaring a rider's horse LOL
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They didn't believe the lying copper! Decided injury had been caused recklessly (i.e. not a punch in the face) - conditional discharge + �150 court costs. Good as an aquittal when magistrates usually take a police officers word!
Reckless battery? Well, it certainly exists " it involves foresight of the possibility that the complainant will be subjected to unlawful force , however slight, and taking that risk" . So be careful not to involve foresight etc , and related risk taking ,for the next twelve months ;)
I've assumed it was 12 months con dis. Whatever it is avoid the above for whatever the period named, at least.
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Its actually for my partner, and the words 'wind my neck in' have certainly passed his lips! The judge said he did not accept the coppers version of events but because my partner admitted that it is entirely possible contact was made but it was certainly not intentional or sufficent to cause the injuries presented, the judge basically said that was admitted recklessly assaulting the copper?! Better than them accepting prosecution case that my partner jumped out of his car and punched the guy in the face though - that would've been 6 months I guess. In fact the photos of the injury were taken 1 hour before the 'event'! If we had a proper solicitor it should've been thrown out of court on that really.

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