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Recklessly Cause Grievous Bodily Harm or Wounding

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Best Recklessly Cause Grievous Bodily Harm Lawyers

Recklessly cause grievous bodily harm or wounding is one of the more serious types of assault charge. It is important to obtain advice from a senior criminal lawyer for reckless grievous bodily harm charges.

Our accredited specialist criminal lawyer has dealt with hundreds of these charges and is adept at finding defences for our clients and also negotiating with the prosecution. If you are unsure of whether you should be pleading guilty or not guilty, you should read below. You can also see our recent results for Recklessly Cause Grievous Bodily Harm charges.

WHAT SHOULD I DO?

  • PLEADING NOT GUILTY

    What is Recklessly Cause Grievous Bodily Harm?

    Section 35 of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW) sets out the definition of recklessly cause grievous bodily harm as committing a reckless act that causes a really serious injury to another person.

    Recklessly causing grievous bodily harm is a Table 1 offence under the Criminal Procedure Act 1986 (NSW). As such, it is finalised in the Local Court unless you or the prosecution elects to deal with it in the District Court.

     

    How Do You Beat a Recklessly Cause Grievous Bodily Harm Charge?

    You can fight a recklessly cause grievous bodily harm charge in two ways. Firstly, the prosecution must prove each of the following beyond reasonable doubt:

    1. You caused grievous bodily harm or wounding; and
    2. You realised that your actions could cause actual bodily harm or wounding and committed the act.
    3. If you are charged with an ‘in company offence’, the prosecution must also prove that another person was present who was ready, willing and able to assist with the commission of the offence.

     

    If any of these elements are not made out, then you can be found ‘not guilty’.

    Secondly, you can rely on one of the defences.

     

    What is Recklessness?

    In order to prove recklessness, the prosecution must prove that you foresaw the possibility that actual bodily harm could be occasioned to someone but continued with your actions.

     

    What is Grievous Bodily Harm?

    The definition of grievous bodily harm is any permanent or serious disfiguring of a person. However, the injury does not need to be permanent or life threatening. Each case will always be a question of fact and degree.

    The NSW Court of Criminal Appeal explained that proving grievous bodily harm requires evidence that the injury is not just serious bodily injury, but really serious bodily injury (R v Swan [2016] NSWCCA). Further, only the injury itself and its direct physical effects – as opposed to the personal, social and economic consequences – can be taken into account in deciding whether an injury amounts to really serious bodily injury.

     

    What is Actual Bodily Harm?

    Something as simple as a bruise or a cut can satisfy the definition of actual bodily harm. See our page on assault occasioning actual bodily harm for more details.

     

    What are the Defences to Recklessly Cause Grievous Bodily Harm?

    The following defences to recklessly cause grievous bodily harm are available:

    1. Causation: The prosecution cannot prove that your actions caused the injury
    2. Self defence: You were defending yourself or another person, and your actions were a reasonable response to the circumstances as you perceived them
    3. The injury does not amount to grievous bodily harm. We can engage our medical experts to provide a report as to whether the injury amounts to grievous bodily harm;
    4. Identification:The prosecution cannot prove that you were responsible for the injury
    5. The prosecution cannot prove that you were reckless
    6. Duress: You were forced to commit the offence
    7. Necessity: Your actions were necessary

     

    To obtain the best lawyers for grievous bodily harm charges, contact us now.

  • PLEADING GUILTY

    Before pleading guilty, speak to an experienced criminal lawyer who can give you realistic and practical guidance on the best way to tackle your case. If you decide to plead guilty, you can consult our guide for some general tips. However, you will need to consult a specialist grievous bodily harm solicitor for advice specific to your case. Contact us now to speak to our team.

     

    What are the Penalties for Recklessly Cause Grievous Bodily Harm? 

    Recklessly causing grievous bodily harm carries a maximum penalty of 10 years jail and a standard non parole period of 4 years.

    Recklessly cause grievous bodily harm in company carries a maximum penalty of 14 years imprisonment and a standard non parole period of 5 years.

    Reckless wounding carries a maximum penalty of 7 years jail and a standard non parole period of 3 years.

    Reckless wounding in company carries a maximum penalty of 10 years jail and a standard non parole period of 4 years.

    If the case is finalised in the Local Court, the maximum penalty if 2 years imprisonment.

     

    What are the Possible Sentences for Recklessly Causing Grievous Bodily Harm?

    The potential sentencing options for a charge of Recklessly cause grievous bodily harm are:

    1. Section 10 dismissal
    2. Conditional release order without conviction (previously known as Section 10 good behaviour bond)
    3. Fine
    4. Conditional release order with conviction (previously known as Section 9 good behaviour bond)
    5. Community Corrections Order (previously known as Community Service Order)
    6. Intensive Corrections Order
    7. Home Detention Order (no longer used in NSW)
    8. Full Time Imprisonment

     

    Will You Go to Jail for Recklessly Causing Grievous Bodily Harm?

    Statistics for recklessly cause grievous bodily harm charges over the last 5 years show that only 2% of offenders received no conviction. By contrast, almost 80% of people received some form of imprisonment. Almost 50% of sentences were full-time imprisonment.

    Clearly, avoiding imprisonment is very difficult. As such, you should speak to one of our specialist criminal defence lawyers for reckless grievous bodily harm charges to give yourself the best chance of avoiding jail.

FAQ

What is Wounding?

Wounding is defined as breaking or cutting of the interior layer of the skin.

 

Can a Recklessly Cause Grievous Bodily Harm or Wounding charge be downgraded?

Recklessly Causing Grievous Bodily Harm is a more serious charge than common assault and Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm. As such, it is possible to have this charge downgraded. This will involve your lawyer sending Police or the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions ‘representations’. It will also likely require engaging our own medical expert to provide an opinion as to whether any injury amounts to ‘Grievous Bodily Harm’ or ‘Wounding’. If you would like to know whether your charge can be downgraded, you should speak to one of our Senior Criminal Defence Lawyers.