Request callback





    Assault Lawyers Parramatta

    If you've been charged with assault contact our expert criminal defence lawyers. We have offices in Parramatta, Sydney CBD and Liverpool and regularly represent clients at courts all over New South Wales.

    Get A Free Case EvaluationHave a legal issue?

    Submit your inquiry to speak to a Senior Lawyer






      What is assault

      An assault is said to have occurred when someone intentionally or recklessly causes another person to immediately apprehend unlawful violence. This may or may not involve actually touching the other person and the type of charge may depend upon the seriousness of injuries or the occupation of the person assaulted.

      See our recent results for assault charges. Or see below for more information on specific types of assault offences.

      Types of assault

      As well as more serious charges such as

      The definition of assault is broad enough that it even when there is no mark, injury and even no physical contact, a person can be found guilty of assault. It can also include acts such as spitting or throwing an object in the vicinity of another person.

      Defences to assault

      There are many defences to assaults. The most common kind is self-defence. Self-defence can extend to the defence of others or property.

      Raising self defence must be done by the accused person. The accused person also needs to show that they believed it was necessary to do what they did, and that the belief was a reasonable one.

      Consent is a slightly less commonly used defence and only applies to certain and specific categories of offences, as consent cannot be given in cases where an assault causes bodily harm.

      Pleading guilty or not guilty?

      Anyone who is charged with a criminal offence and brought before the court has the option to either plead guilty or not guilty.

      A plea of guilty involves accepting that the elements of the offence are met. When a plea of guilty is entered the facts sheet that police have written is given to the magistrate. The magistrate reads that facts sheet and takes them to be the facts of the matter and sentences on the basis that it is true.

      When a plea of not guilty is entered, if the matter is not a domestic violence offence, the court will order a timetable for the service of the police brief of evidence and the defendants response to that evidence.

      Briefs of evidence contain everything the police intend to rely upon to prove the guilty of the defendant. Items in a brief can range from statements of witnesses, to footage and recordings, and medical or expert evidence. Each case is different and so what comprises a brief of evidence is different in every matter.

      Once the relevant evidence has been served, then the matter is generally set down for a hearing where witnesses will come and give their evidence. Defendants may choose to give evidence too, and everyone is cross-examined on the evidence they have given. Following this, the magistrate or jury make a decision about whether or not the evidence has proved that the defendant committed the offence beyond a reasonable doubt.

      What does the court consider when I plead guilty?

      The court considers a range of objective and subjective factors at sentence when a plea of guilty has been entered including:

      • Age
      • Prior criminal record and good character
      • The objective seriousness of the assault
      • Whether it was planned or spontaneous
      • The degree of violence
      • Whether or not weapons or instruments were used
      • The duration of the assault
      • Mental illness
      • Provocation
      • Rehabilitation
      • Remorse and contrition
      • The likelihood of reoffending

      What if I disagree with some of the facts?

      If a defendant disagrees with elements of the facts sheet then it is imperative the issues be worked out prior to being sentenced. Once a plea of guilty is entered and the magistrate receives the facts sheet, it’s contents cannot be disputed.

      Issues with facts can be resolved in a number of ways depending on the impact they have on the seriousness of the matter and the attitude of police. Often factual issues can be resolved by negotiating with police through written representations, however sometimes a disputed facts hearing is required.

      Penalties for assault charges in NSW

      Most assaults are indictable offences that can be dealt with summarily. That means that they are determined in the Local Court, rather than the District Court. The penalties vary depending on the exact offence with which you have been charged. If you’ve been charged with assault you should contact a criminal lawyer prior to attending court.

      Full time imprisonment is the maximum penalty for all of the varying kinds of assault and the court takes these sorts of offences very seriously.

      Preparing to go to court

      Being prepared for sentence proceedings or a hearing cannot be undervalued. Attending rehabilitation or counselling to address any underlying issues can be highly relevant and helpful on sentence, as well as clear acts and statements of remorse and contrition, as well as the production of character references which speak to the more personal aspects of the offenders character and life.

      Assault Case Studies

      • Bail Granted & then Not Guilty to Intentionally Choke, Intimidation & Assault Charges

        Recently Astor Legal appeared at Downing Centre Local Court in relation to a client charged with a number of domestic violence charges including Intentionally Choke, Common Assault, Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm and Stalk/Intimidate.

        Police alleged that our client had become engaged in a heated argument with his wife in the kitchen. This argument then moved to the bedroom of their 8-year-old daughter. It was alleged that while their daughter was present, our client had slapped his wife in the face before throwing a fan at her.

        The prosecution claimed that our client had then choked his wife for a number of seconds, leaving her unable to breathe. It was alleged that his wife then ran out of the apartment and to the front of the building where she called Police and waited for them to arrive.

        Our client contacted us after his arrest by Police. He was bail refused and brought before Waverley Local Court for a bail application. We appeared for him and despite strenuous objections by the prosecutor, we were able to have our client released on bail.

        We then got to work preparing his defence.

        We obtained CCTV footage from the apartment complex which showed that the complainant had not ran from the apartment, but rather walked at a leisurely pace. We were also able to obtain the 000 recording of her phone call to Police where she gave a version that was significantly different to what she told the Police officers who arrived on the scene.

        At the hearing we were able to cross-examine her at length about these inconsistencies. Further inconsistencies in her version were revealed during our cross-examination.

        Ultimately, the Magistrate could not be satisfied beyond reasonable doubt on each of the allegations and our client was found ‘not guilty’.

      • No Conviction for Domestic Violence Offences

        Our client is a 35-year-old father living in Zetland with his pregnant wife and 7-year-old child.

        He had recently completed a university degree in project management and was searching for work.

        Prior to finding a job he was charged with stalk/intimidate and destroy/damage property over an incident in the family home. Police alleged that our client had threatened to drag his wife out of the home. He had also kicked a door and caused significant damage to it.

        He initially went to another criminal law firm but grew frustrated with their lack of results after spending a significant sum of money.

        He came to us desperate to avoid a conviction.

        We immediately got to work preparing the case. First, we enrolled our client with a psychologist for anger management counselling.

        Next, we obtained letters from other in the project management industry detailing the impact a conviction would have on his prospects of gaining employment. We also had our client repair the door at his own expense.

        We attended Downing Centre Local Court with our client. Despite initially facing significant resistance from the Magistrate, we were able to persuade Her Honour to not record a conviction.

        Our client was extremely grateful and has since obtained employment as a project manager for a large multi-national firm.

      • No Jail For Assault Police Causing Actual Bodily Harm

        Astor Legal appeared in Coonabarabran Local Court recently.

        We were representing an indigenous client who has suffered a very difficult past few years. From his teenage years he had battled drug and alcohol addiction as well as mental illness.

        Today he was facing very serious charges including assault police officer in execution of duty causing actual bodily harm.

        Our client had repeatedly punched police officers resulting in one of the officers requiring multiple stitches to his face.

        Ordinarily, there is a strong possibility of jail for these charges.

        To compound this, our client had a lengthy criminal history and had only recently completed an Intensive Corrections Order for similar offences.

        Despite this, we were able to persuade the Magistrate not to impose a term of imprisonment.

        We made compelling submissions relating to his difficult upbringing (known as Bugmy principles) and highlighted the significant steps he had taken towards rehabilitation and bettering himself.

        In the result, our client was able to walk free from Court and will be enjoying Christmas with his grateful family.

      • Section 32 for Serious Assault Charges

        Recently, our senior lawyers were able to persuade a Magistrate at Parramatta Local Court to dismiss serious domestic violence charges against our client.

        Police had alleged that our client was trying to take money from his parents. When they refused to provide him with the money, it was alleged that he had attempted to choke one of them.⠀

        If found guilty our client was facing a criminal conviction and up to 5 years imprisonment. This would be devastating as he was a practising lawyer. ⠀

        Our team identified that there were strong mental health factors at play and immediately got to work preparing an instructing letter to a psychiatrist.

        Our client was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. We then prepared lengthy written submissions.

        Ultimately, the Magistrate was persuaded to dismiss the charge pursuant to a Section 32 Application.⠀

        Our client and his family were extremely relieved to have put this ordeal behind them and move on with their lives.

      • Domestic Violence Assault Charges Withdrawn and Dismissed

        Our team recently appeared at Mount Druitt Local Court for a defended Hearing on domestic violence charges.

        Our client was an elderly businessman who was facing two sets of domestic violence charges. The first set of charges involved using a carriage service to menace. The second set of charges included common assault and contravene AVO. ⠀

        The Police case consisted of the complainant and a witness, as well as extensive telephone records. Police had obtained video recorded statements from our client’s wife and son. They had also obtained phone records of both our client’s phone and his wife’s phone.

        Our client had also participated in an interview and stated that he had no memory of the incident. The complainant later told Police that she did not want the charges to proceed, but Police ignored her. ⠀

        Despite this, we were able to beat all of the charges. The prosecution in fact withdrew the use carriage service to menace charges mid-way through the Hearing, and the remaining charges were dismissed at the end of the Hearing. ⠀

        In the result, our client was able to walk free from Court and spent the New Year with his grateful family.⠀

      • Not Guilty to Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm and AVO dismissed

        Our client is a 28-year-old woman who came to Australia from Tanzania on a partner visa.

        She had been with her partner for 5 years and the pair had been married for the last 3 years.

        Police had alleged that one evening, while she was at home with her partner she had stabbed him twice with a large, serrated knife. The complainant phoned ‘000’ and Police attended a short time later.

        The officers gave evidence in Court that our client was severely intoxicated when they arrived. They also said that they observed the alleged victim with a significant wound that was still bleeding and transported him to St Vincent’s Hospital.

        The the complainant spoke to the on-call doctor and received treatment and the wound was bandaged.

        Police charged our client with ‘Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm‘. If found guilty the maximum penalty for this offence is 5 years imprisonment.

        Our client also participated in an interview with Police where she made damning admissions, including, “I did wrong to cut his hand, I admit that. I’m fine to get some punishment”.

        Despite this, our team of assault lawyers meticulously prepared the case and set out a detailed cross-examination of the alleged victim.

        Our lawyers were able to cross-examine the complainant at length about inconsistencies in his version of events. We also raised his level of intoxication at the time of the incident.

        Ultimately, after a two day Hearing, the Magistrate was persuaded to dismiss the charge. Due to the strength of our defence, Police also withdrew the Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) they had taken out against our client.

        After being subjected to onerous bail and AVO conditions for almost a year, our client can finally have some peace of mind.

      Ask a question now!