Indecent Assault Offences
What is Indecent Assault?
Indecent Assault is a serious offence involving a person assaulting another, and during that assault, or either immediately before or after, the offender commits an act of indecency.
It is a summary offence, which means that it is normally dealt with in the Local Court before a Magistrate, unless the Director of Public Prosecution decides to elect to have the matter brought before a Judge in the District Court, due to the seriousness of the accusations and the age of the victim.
Indecent Assault & The Law
The offence of committing an act of Indecency is set out in Section 61L of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW).
What the Prosecution need to Prove (Beyond a Reasonable Doubt):
The accused assaulted the victim; and
At the time of the offence, or immediately before or after the assault, an act of indecency was also committed;
The victim did not consent to the act of indecency
What is an Act of Indecency?
An Act of Indecency is an act which a reasonable person would consider falls short of the normal community standards of decency. It is somewhat ambiguous in nature, and often based on singular testimony of what an external party saw and witnessed. This is often heavily scrutinised in Court during cross-examination.
In determining whether the act alone crossed any threshold of a standard of decency, the Courts have the discretion of considering any of the surrounding circumstances where the act is alleged to have occurred.
What is Assault?
Assault can be defined as any type of act, physical or verbal, performed towards another person, intentionally or recklessly, which causes them to fear immediate and unlawful violence.
Going to Court – “What am I looking at?”
If the matter remains in the Local Court, the maximum penalty that can be imposed if a term of imprisonment of 2 years and /or a fine of up to $5,500. However, if the matter gets elected and moved up to the District Court, the maximum penalty is a term of imprisonment of up to 5 years imprisonment.
Lawyer Call – here to help..
Contact our experienced team of defence solicitors to obtain appropriate and honest legal advice regarding the prospects of defending this charge and fighting it in Court at a defended hearing or trial before a Jury. Our professional Criminal team we will provide you with a clear breakdown of the alleged facts, the application of the relevant Legislation, and the options you have taking into account all the evidence.
At Lawyer Call we have the expertise and appropriate Barristers and Senior Legal Counsel available for contested Local Court hearings and District Court trial work. We understand that the correct management of such a sensitive case through the long Court processes is crucial to putting up the right fight.
Alternatively, if a plea of guilty is more appropriate in the circumstances, or if negotiations need to be conducted in an effort to downgrade the charge, our solicitors have in-depth preparation in gathering and analysing specific medical and supporting documentation to assist the case and present the best possible submissions before a Judge for a more lenient sentence.