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Charged With S 20 Wounding

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Jalal12345 | 18:21 Sun 09th Aug 2020 | Law
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Hi I’ve been charged with a s 20 for hitting someone with a shovel, due to him giving me racial abuse, I just lost it, I didn’t turn Upto the scene with a shovel or nothing it was just there on the ground an when things got heated I picked it up an hit him twice leaving a small cut above his ear which needed gluing, the officer dealing with my case told me to go in for a voluntary interview which I agreed to, and when I went in I half put myself at the scene of the crime, then a week later the officer rang me to tell me cps have charged me with s20 which he thought was strange as when he was dealing with the incident he put it through as a s47 abh....
He told me in his own words when I get to court an my solicitor argues that the injury was not that serious it will most likely get dropped back down. Is this true? I know an assault with a weapon is more serious than with my fists but it was Honeslty just a heat of the moment thing and if the shovel wasn’t in front of me it wouldn’t of got used. What is the likely outcome of this an do you think the charge will get dropped down to the lesser abh as his injury’s we’re not serious enough to warrant a gbh/wounding charge.

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Also Ive only ever been in trouble once in my life, where I pushed a traffic warden and got 120 hours community service, I pleaded guilty straight away an completed my community order as fast as I could with no issues, so I was thinking about the possibility if I do get sent down, of a suspended sentence, during the time of the assault I had 3 close people(one of them including my grandad) pass away in the space of 2 months and I was clinically depressed but now that this has happened I have gone to the doctors and been prescribed anti depressants To deal with my issues, I also have ads which makes me act on impulse, do you think any of these things will help mitigate in court, my plea hearing is at the magistrates and I’m currently not on any bail terms or anything
The CPS's own guidelines state:
"A "wound" means a break in the continuity of the whole skin . . . . The definition of wounding may encompass injuries that are relatively minor in nature, for example a small cut or laceration.

The “wounding” form of these offences should be reserved for those wounds considered to be really serious. However, it is appropriate to charge these offences when a wound is caused by a knife or other weapon, to reflect the seriousness".

https://www.cps.gov.uk/legal-guidance/offences-against-person-incorporating-charging-standard#_Toc27668464

So it seems that it's the use of a weapon that has resulted in the s.20 charge being used against you. However the CPS's guidelines aren't a statement of law. I would think that it's very likely that either the charge will get dropped down to s.47 or, even it remains at s.20, the court will impose a sentence within the region where s.47 and s.20 sentences overlap anyway.
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Thanks buenchicho I was reading all the questions back to 2010 an you have always provided helpful answers... what sentence would you predict would be the outcome, an would it be best just to plead guilty and hope I have a happy judge on the day, also would my previous conviction of common assault affect the sentencing much?
//...an would it be best just to plead guilty//

Why, are you considering contesting the matter?
If the s.20 charge stands, the court will probably see it only as a Category 3 offence. The 'starting point' sentence is then a high-level community order. With a guilty plea, it's unlikely that the sentence would be moved up from there (thus avoiding any prospect of custody) and it could even be moved down. So my best guess is that you'll be given a community order:
https://www.sentencingcouncil.org.uk/offences/magistrates-court/item/inflicting-grievous-bodily-harm-unlawful-wounding/

If the charge is lowered to s.47 a community order would still be what I'd put my money on:
https://www.sentencingcouncil.org.uk/offences/magistrates-court/item/assault-occasioning-actual-bodily-harm-racially-religiously-aggravated-abh/

Your previous conviction is unlikely to have any bearing upon the sentence.
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No judge I am not contesting the matter I just wanted to know if pleading guilty was the best way about it, opposed to a no plea an to let the jury decide on my fate.. but if pleading guilty will make it all be done with quicker, then I think that’s the best way about it, as I have a 3 year old and another child on the way, they need my undue love and attention, and the quicker this is over with, the quicker I can put all this behind me and learn from my mistakes. Also thank you again buenchico for your answer, as I said it may just be a helpful answer to you but for most worried people it goes a long way and has took quite a lot of weight off my shoulders as I’m pretty unfamiliar with how the court and everything works.
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Do you not think it’s higher culpability that I had used a weapon though? I know the injury wasn’t that serious but wouldn’t higher culpability bring it up to a category 2 with a starting point of 18 months?
My feeling is that, because you didn't specifically 'tool yourself up' with a weapon, 'culpability' won't be placed into the higher category. However New Judge is the real expert here; it's what he does for a living!

Even if a custodial sentence was to be passed though, there's still a very good chance (in my opinion) that it would be suspended anyway.
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Yeah thank you! What are your thoughts on this matter new judge? Do you think I have good mitigation for this matter, with adhd, 3 people close to me dieng, few good character references, and the significant harm it would cause to my children and partner if I was to receive an immediate custodial sentence, I mean all that should be enough for a suspended sentence wouldn’t it?
No shortage of excuses for your behaviour & absolutely no concern for the person you attacked.
All you are saying, or rather repeating, is "Not my fault !"
Not the first time either, & those are just the incidents that involved the courts.
It would be interesting to get your partner's story.
Perhaps some anger-management classes might help.

// It would be interesting to get your partner's story//
no it wouldnt
quite honestly I dont think you have had much good advice on this thread and you really need a lawyer

he will be able to look at what you have admitted so far ( seems quite a lot ) and what to do now.
Or she.
this is what I mean by poor quality advice
you seem to have been 'verballed' - incriminated yourself by a nice little conversation with nice Mr Policeman
and need a lawyer

and here above is a post worryng about whether the lawyer is female or not - your worry is - can they mitgate the charges?
//I just wanted to know if pleading guilty was the best way about it, opposed to a no plea an to let the jury decide on my fate..//

If you enter no plea a Not Guilty plea will be entered and you will face a trial. This matter is unlikely to go before a jury in any event. From your description it seems to be something the Magistrates' Court will deal with. It will only go to the Crown Court if you plead Not Guilty and request a jury trial.
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Thank you new judge so if I take full responsibility and just plead guilty and get it over an done with I will be jurisdicted in the magistrates? And to ardoz saying I am not claiming responsibility and I should attend anger management classes, how do you know I haven’t already sought help for that? I know I’m not really a violent person otherwise my record would say otherwise, but when you subject to racial discrimination, something in you head just makes you see a red mist. And to Peter pedant I have a solicitor, I even had one represent me at the voluntary interview and he told me to claim self defence on the first altercation with the victim, but the officer didn’t tell him that I went back a second time to confront him about the first altercation and that’s when the assault happened as I was subject to more abuse.
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So that is how I incriminated myself to the scene the second time, which is at fault of my duty free solicitor, otherwise I would of got off with a caution, as my now solicitor would think, but nothing happened the first time, just an heated exchange of words. But I went with the advice of the first solicitor as I am new and I thought by saying what he told me to say would get me off with a simple caution
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// quite honestly I dont think you have had much good advice on this thread and you really need a lawyer //
I personally think the advice I’ve been given is very helpful and insightful by buenchico and new judge they have pretty much told me that the charge will most likely get dropped to the lesser as the officer dealing with my case had said... also I have been told if it stays at a s 20 it would be sentenced around the overlapping point which I had a feeling it was at around that point. Also I have been worried sick it would be getting took to crown an I would be looking at over 2 years which has been made clear to me that the chances of that are very slim and that even if it’s a custodial sentence it will more than likely be suspended due to me not being a risk/danger to the public, I have a good compliance with my previous court order, and immediate custody would have a detrimental and profound effect on my partner and children whom I live with.
you thought you would get a caution for hitting someone round the head twice with a shovel?
I know our legal system sometimes feel a bit lacking but I think that's rather optimistic.
In any case, we are randon internetters, and if you are paying for a solicitors advice, i'd be more inclined to ask them, as they will have the benefit of the full facts.
For example, you don't mention in your original account (on which people's advice was based) that you had an altercation, then went back again to hit him after presumably walking away. won't that have an impact n culpability?
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Yeh I walked way after our altercation then went back to speak to him about it which resulted in more abuse being directed towards me, and my new solicitor said to me if I had just told police the full events of what happened then I probably might of got a caution.. it’s because I claimed self defence from the advice of my first solicitor that I was rui then charged, but the end of the day the injury wasn’t as bad as it could of been, I mean I realised what I had done after it happened and stopped and ran off, if I was really out to cause gbh with intent it could of easily been accomplished
well thank goodness you ran off (!) that makes it sound so much better.
I can sort of see what aaroz is saying - you know you are "not a violent person" yet you shoved a traffic warden and hit someone round the head with a shovel twice, it was the shovel's fault because it was lying there, it was his fault because he got in a row with you, it was the people who had dieds fault because it made you depressed.
Anyway this is the law section, and apparently i'm not allowed to judge, but perhaps it might mitigate your sentence a bit if you do actually show some genuine remorse, and do actually get some help for anger (although you hint you already have?). I can only re-iterate that if you are paying for advice that you are happy with, take it. If you are not happy with the advice you are paying for, get someone else.

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