Suspended Sentence for 19-Year-Old Client Convicted of Wounding and Stalking

In February 2019, our client (19-year-old) was charged with a number of offences in relation to an incident that occurred with his former partner at an address in Ferny Hills.

The initial allegations consisted of:
• Stalking the victim via text messages, phone calls, by attending the victim’s residence and by attending the victim’s work to speak to her (Unlawful Stalking – Domestic Violence Offence);
• Our client attending the victim’s residence and entering via the backdoor (Burglary – Domestic Violence Offence);
• Being armed with a knife and cutting the victim during a physical altercation (Wounding – Domestic Violence).

Samantha O’Connor of our office entered into extensive negotiations with the Office of The Director of Public Prosecutions in relation to deficiencies in the evidence and witness statements. Two submissions were sent on behalf of our client. It was submitted that the burglary charge should be discontinued, that the dates of the charge of stalking be amended and that the factual basis of the wounding be amended. The submission was accepted resulting in a shorter period of stalking being preferred against our client and the burglary charge being discontinued.

Further, the factual basis of the charge was amended with respect to the wounding count, our client was sentenced on the basis that he did not intend to wound the complainant but it was a reasonably foreseeable consequence if his actions of holding an open flick knife in his hand. This had a large impact on the level of criminality associated with the wounding charge.

Wounding is a serious charge that carries a maximum penalty of 7 years imprisonment. In R v Meehan [1996] QCA 215 it was said by Justice Demack that offences of wounding, inflicted by the use of a knife, are to be punished by condign sentences, even where the offender is young, is a first offender and is otherwise of good character. R v Cui [2009] QCA 334 and R v Kidner [2005] QCA 430 were comparable cases where the offenders entered pleas of guilty and were first time young offenders, in both cases the defendant was sentenced to a term of imprisonment wholly suspended after serving a short period of actual custody (2 months and 3 months).

The charges were committed to the Brisbane District Court for sentence. An indictment was presented against our client and the matter was listed for sentence. Samantha O’Connor of our office appeared at our client’s sentence before the Brisbane District Court instructing Counsel. Our client entered a plea of guilty at an early stage, had a very limited history, was 19 years of age, had served 11 days in custody prior to obtaining bail, had demonstrated rehabilitation by attending a number of counselling sessions, had been compliant with his strict Supreme Court bail undertaking and co-operated with police by participating in a record of interview and making admissions.

The client was sentenced to a head sentence of 12 months imprisonment wholly suspended for 2 years. Our client was thankful for the excellent result that allowed him to move on with his life and remain in the community.

If you are interested in our criminal lawyers acting on your behalf, please call Samantha O’Connor on 3009 8452 or 0435 575 867.

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