Assault Charges QLD

Offences against the person in the form of assault is one of the more common types of crime committed in Queensland.

Assault and related charges not only encompass physical injury, but also the threat of injury, and these charges often carry heavy sentences, such as imprisonment, community service or weekend detention.

Cases of assault are usually perpetrated by one person against another; however, there are also charges for incidents that involve more than one offender. Affray, riot and violent disorder are charges that can be brought against people who participate in group fights. These fights are usually in public places and may disturb the peace; however, they can also occur in a private residence.

Below are some of the most common assault offences:

Assault - Affray

Affray', 'violent disorder' and 'riot' are the most common 'public order' offences in QLD.

These charges are normally brought where there has been some kind of a public disturbance. However, affray and violent disorder can also occur within a private setting such as a person's home.

There are serious penalties that can be imposed by the Court, including imprisonment, so it is important that you seek legal advice if you are charged for these offences. 

What the law says - Section 72 of the Criminal Code 1899

Any person who takes part in a fight in a public place, or takes part in a fight of such a nature as to alarm the public in any other place to which the public have access, commits a misdemeanour.

Maximum penalty is 1 year's imprisonment.

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 Assault Occasioning Bodily Harm

What the law says - Section 339 (1) of the Criminal Code 1899

Any person who unlawfully assaults another and thereby does him bodily harm is guilty of an offence.

  • The Maximum penalty for the offence of Assault Occasioning Bodily Harm is 7 years imprisonment.
  • If the accused does bodily harm and is or pretends to be armed with any dangerous or offensive weapon or instrument or is in the company with 1 or more other person or persons the maximum penalty is 10 years imprisonment.

If you have been charged with an offence, get legal advice soon as possible – don’t leave it till the last minute.

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Assault on Police Officer In Execution of His Duty

What the law says - Sections 340 (1) of the Criminal Code 1899

Assaulting a police officer in the execution of his or her duty is also an offence under a number of other acts. The Police Powers and Responsibilities Act provides for maximum penalties of $1500.00, or six (6) months imprisonment for a person who commits this offence. An offence of assaulting police under the Police Powers and Responsibilities Act must be dealt with in the Magistrates Court.

The Maximum penalty for the offence of Assault on Police Officer In Execution Of His Duty (Serious Assault) is 7 years imprisonment.

If you have been charged with an offence, get legal advice soon as possible – don’t leave it till the last minute.

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 Common Assault

A person who strikes, touches, or moves, or otherwise applies force of any kind to, the person of another, either directly or indirectly, without the other person's consent, or with the other person's consent if the consent is obtained by fraud, or who by any bodily act or gesture attempts or threatens to apply force of any kind to the person of another without the other person's consent, under such circumstances that the person making the attempt or threat has actually or apparently a present ability to effect the person's purpose, is said to assault that other person, and the act is called an assault.

The Maximum penalty for the offence of Assault is 7 years imprisonment.

If you have been charged with an offence, get legal advice soon as possible – don’t leave it till the last minute.

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 Domestic Violence

What the law says -Section 20 of the Domestic and Family Violence Protection Act

A domestic violence order is an order made by the Court that includes conditions that restrain, restrict and prohibit the behaviour of the respondent to prevent further domestic violence.
The Act allows the Court to make a domestic violence order against a respondent if the Court is satisfied that:

  • the respondent has committed an act of domestic violence against the aggrieved
  • the respondent is likely to commit an act of domestic violence again
  • if the act of domestic violence was a threat, that the respondent is likely to carry out the threat.

A domestic violence order can protect the aggrieved and relatives and associates of the aggrieved who are named in the order.

A domestic violence order is a civil order and not a criminal matter. However, a respondent who breaches or disobeys the order commits a criminal offence.

Domestic violence orders can last up to two years. In special circumstances the domestic violence order can be extended for a period longer than two years. 

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 Breach of Domestic Violence

What the law says - Section 80(1) of the Domestic and Family Violence Protection Act Queensland

A respondent must not contravene a protection order, temporary protection order or any other order made under this Act, including a condition imposed by the order, if

  • the respondent was present in court when the order was made; or
  • the respondent was served with a copy of the order; or
  • a police officer told the respondent about the existence of the order.

The Maximum penalty for the offence of breaching a domestic violence order is 2 years imprisonment if the offender has in the three (3) years before the current offence, been convicted of breaching a domestic violence order at least twice. Otherwise, the maximum penalty is 40 penalty units or 1 year imprisonment. A penalty unit = $100.00. 

What The Police Must Prove - Domestic Violence

In order for the Police to prove their case at Court, they must prove each of the following matters beyond a reasonable doubt:

  • The accused was the respondent in respect of a Domestic Violence Order that was in place at the time of the offence.
  • The aggrieved was a person named on that Domestic Violence Order as a person to benefit from that order; and
  • The accused breached that order by:
    • failing to be of good behaviour towards the aggrieved;
    • committing an act of domestic violence; and/or
    • failing to comply with one of the conditions made by the court.

It will be necessary for the Police in every offence to prove that the accused was the person who committed the offence.
The charge, Contravene a Domestic Violence Order is a serious criminal offence with the possibility of a gaol sentence.

If you have been charged with an offence, get legal advice soon as possible – don’t leave it till the last minute.

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 Grievous Bodily Harm

What the law says - Section 320 of the Criminal Code1899

Any person who unlawfully does grievous bodily harm to another is guilty of a crime. The Maximum penalty for the offence of Grievous Bodily Harm is 14 years imprisonment.

If you have been charged with an offence, get legal advice soon as possible – don’t leave it till the last minute.

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 Kidnapping

What the law says - Section 354 (2) of the Criminal Code 1899

Kidnapping is commonly defined as a person kidnaps another person if the person unlawfully and forcibly takes or detains the other person with intent to gain anything from any person or to procure anything to be done or omitted to be done by any person. A parent without legal custody rights may be charged with kidnapping for taking his or her own child, in certain circumstances. 

The Maximum penalty for the offence of Kidnapping is 7 years imprisonment. 

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 Kidnapping for Ransom

What the law says - Section 354 of the Criminal Code 1899

Any person who is (a) with intent to extort or gain anything from or procure anything to be done or omitted to be done by any person by a demand containing threats of detriment of any kind to be caused to any person, either by the offender or any other person, if the demand is not complied with, takes or entices away, or detains, the person in respect of whom the threats are made; or (b) receives or harbours the said person in respect of whom the threats are made, knowing such person to have been so taken or enticed away, or detained;

is guilty of a crime which is called kidnapping for ransom.

Any person who commits the crime of kidnapping for ransom is liable to imprisonment for 14 years.

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 Riot And Unlawful Assembly

What the law says - Section 61 of the Criminal Code 1899

12 or more persons who are present together (assembled persons) use or threaten to use unlawful violence to a person or property for a common purpose; and

the conduct of them taken together would cause a person in the vicinity to reasonably fear for the person's personal safety;

each of the assembled persons commits the crime of taking part in a riot.

Maximum penalty if

  • if the offender causes grievous bodily harm to a person, causes an explosive substance to explode or destroys or starts to destroy a building, vehicle or machinery life imprisonment; or
  • if
    • the offender is armed with a dangerous or offensive weapon, instrument or explosive substance; or
    • property is damaged, whether by the offender or another of the assembled persons is 7 years imprisonment; or
  • otherwise is 3 years imprisonment.
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 Unlawful Wounding

What the law says -Sections 323 of the Criminal Code 1899

Any person who unlawfully wounds another; or unlawfully, and with intent to injure or annoy any person, causes any poison or other noxious thing to be administered to, or taken by, any person; is guilty of a misdemeanour.

The Maximum penalty for the offence of Unlawful Wounding is 7 years imprisonment.

If you have been charged with an offence, get legal advice soon as possible – don’t leave it till the last minute.