Assault

In prosecuting an assault charge, the prosecution must prove one of three things. That the person accused “applied force” to someone without consent. That the person accused threatened someone causing the victim to feel that the threat will be carried out. Or that the person accused begged or obstructed someone while openly wearing a weapon.

It is up to the Crown prosecutor to prove the allegation beyond a reasonable doubt. It is up to the court to identify whether the alleged offence took place. In the case of an assault, the court must also decide whether the person who was assaulted had consented to the assault, fully appreciating what consent implies. In other words, a court may decide an assault did not occur if both participants in a fight were willing and understood the risks involved. For the s. 265 offence of basic assault, the maximum penalty is five years imprisonment.

However, there are several levels beyond “basic” assault. Assault with a weapon/Assault causing bodily harm involves someone who uses, or threatens to use a weapon or imitation weapon to commit an assault. Or, while in the act of assaulting someone, causes bodily harm or injury to that person. At this level, an offender could see a maximum of 10 years imprisonment if found guilty of an indictable offence. If an accused is found guilty of a summary conviction, the maximum is up to 18 months.

Aggravated assault is generally the most serious form of assault short of an attempted murder charge. A person can be charged with aggravated assault if the person assaulted has been wounded, maimed or disfigured. In other words, the person injured suffered a lasting injury. Those found guilty of aggravated assault may be imprisoned for up to 14 years. Call us for a a free consultation.