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Assault charges withdrawn and Stalk/Intimidate charge dealt with under Mental Health Act

Our client was a 50-year-old man with a previous criminal history. Our client had suffered a catastrophic workplace accident 3 years prior to the offence and had suffered significant injuries. As a result of these injuries, our client was also suffering from mental illness and had attempted to take his own life on 3 separate occasions. Our client was charged with Common Assault and Stalk/Intimidate after a domestic altercation with two separate victims.

Our client was concerned about the welfare of his wife after reporting that she had been feeling unwell for an extended period of time. After attending the home where she was residing, he tried to convince her to seek medical attention. During the altercation, the man’s adult daughter, who was a weightlifter, entered the room and struck the man while blocking the doorway. Our client acted in self-defence, having no option to escape the room. During the heated exchange, the man said words which amounted to intimidation.

After being arrested, our client agreed to participate in an electronically recorded interview with Police. During the interview our client made admissions, but also explained to the Police that his actions were in self-defence. Despite this, our client was charged with assault of his daughter, and intimidation of his wife.

We made representations to the Police confirming that our client was acting in self-defence and as a result, the assault charge was withdrawn. In addition, we sought the assistance of a psychologist to prepare a psychological report in support of what is known as a Section 14 application to have the matter dealt with under the Mental Health Act rather than in the criminal justice system. We successfully convinced the Court to support our client in accessing the mental health treatment he needed rather than sentencing him to further punishment.

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