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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69252
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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Jo. I have been arrested assault. There

Customer Question

Hello Jo.
I have been arrested for common assault. There was an argument between me and my ex partner. She called the police. She told the police that I had put my hands on her neck, although there was no injury caused. And she told them that I kicked the bathroom door in, while she and our children were in there. She said some wood from the door hit her and our child, although no injury was caused.
There was a previous incident 18 months ago. I was charged with ABH, but the CPS did not charge me.
We are separated, and I have had regular contact with the children. I had been coming regularly to the family home, despite living elsewhere.
Do you think that the CPS will be likely to charge me?
Do you think there will be any affect on my contact with the children? Will they stop me from coming to the home?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
How old is the child and what does she say?]
Is there any reason you think they might not charge you? Bearing in mind how vigorous they are on nonsense like this now?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

The child is 5. She is likely to say the door was knocked open and wood hit her foot.

The police have what she said to 999, including my voice in the recording, and they have what she said to them when they came, but she is not going to give an official statement.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Well, I realise that is what she is telling you probably but it is not that simple anymore.
I am really sorry but I would brace yourself for a charge. They are charging everybody at the moment. If your former partner doesn't want you charged with any offence then what she needs to consider doing is not making reports to the police. Usually works for me!
You have to be realistic. She has form for doing this only 18 months ago. She has done it again. She has made an allegation of an assault to the officers at scene. If they used the body cams then that will be her initial S9 statement. If they just took notes and got her to sign them then that is a statement now.
She can refuse to make any subsequent statements. She can always refuse to support a prosecution. Given that there is a history they probably will seek a summons but ultimately if they are ignored there isn't much that can be done about it.
If you are charged then probably there will be bail conditions not to go to the home address and actually it is not in your interests to be over there vulnerable to other allegations. You have to face reality. There are three possibilities and I am quite willing to accept that any may be true. Firstly, you have a temper issue and her allegations are true in which case being in an environment that is stressful is not helpful. Secondly, she just makes false allegations when she can't have what she wants and I know women do that sometimes in which case placing yourself at risk is madness. Thirdly, there is grain of truth in what she has said that is wildly exaggerated and I know that is actually more common than the first two in the UK but then it is still not a safe environment for you.
You can always get the conditions varied at court to allow for contact with the children away from the home but if the child is a witness or a further complainant then probably that won't be attractive either until this is resolved.
If you are not charged then that is a fantastic result but don't fail to heed this warning. Either her claims are true or they are not. If they are not true then you shouldn't be continually placing yourself at risk. Go and get a contact order from the family court and have the children regularly by court order rather than by her allowance. If she has a tantrum then take her back to court and let her explain to a Judge why SHE shouldn't go to prison instead of it always being you.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I believe they used their body cams. I am not sure if she signed their notes - I don't think she would have. You still think the CPS will charge? And would there be any likelihood of a conviction is she will not give a statement or evidence in court? I would be likely to lose my profession if convicted. if convicted, what might the punishment be - I have no previous convictions.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
No, she wouldn't have done. If they used body cams they have a statement from her.
I'm afraid they probably will charge.
They may well not get a conviction but they rarely do. The point of these summonses is get women to stop calling the police to personal disputes. It is dressed up as an attempt to take the pressure off the victim but the truth of the matter is that it is about teaching people to stop making reports if they don't intend to maintain them.
If you are in a profession that depends upon a clean record then you should be running for the hills. If you are go anywhere near her or any other lady who keeps the police on speed dial you will lose your good character so fast the world will spin. There are lots of very trivial offences that we all commit in the course of rows. We just do it with sensible people who don't summons up the police to play.
Get a contact order for the children that doesn't depends on coming face to face with her and therefore being at risk of her allegations and find yourself a sensible girlfriend who has never called the police to a row.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Sorry, I was asking if you think they will charge me for assault, not if they will summons my ex for not giving a statement. Please could you clarify?

I know the police used body cams to photograph the door. I don't know if they used body cams when they spoke with her. If they did, is that strong enough evidence to convict, even without a signed statement?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Well, the one follows the other.
If they have a statement from her in the form of body cam account they will probably charge you.
If she tries to withdraw, given that she has done this before, they will probably summons her.
You may be lucky but we are dealing in probabilities.
They will have used their body cam when they spoke to her. That is the only real merit in having them. Their whole purpose was to deal with a situation where a statement is then refused. The only reason they would not have done is either that it was malfunctioning or sheer incompetence.
In terms of evidence to convict, it depends. Applying the strict test probably not but Magistrates make things up as they go along! They can't just play the body cam evidence though. They have to get over the hearsay hurdles which are quite hard to do if the only issue is that she is staying away because she has decided that it is all a load of nonsense and she shouldn't have called the police - until the next time she does it. The hearsay hurdles were designed for dead or ill or intimidated witnesses. Parliament fondly ***** ***** complainants stay away through fear when the reality is that they stay away because they shouldn't ever have called the police.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thanks for your help.

It sounds as though I may be charged, but that it might be quite hard to convict if my ex did not appear in court.

If I was convicted, what do you think the likely punishment would be? I have no previous convictions.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Yes, that is basically it.
In terms of sentencing, it is aggravated by the issue of the hands around the neck and also a child in the house if not a witness. It is actually just a bit of nonsense that should be in the family court but I would expect a community order of some form. It is not serious enough for an IDAP course.
The trouble is though that she will be saying, or was saying at one point and will start again, that it was strangulation. Hands around the neck can be very trivial or very serious depending on the amount of pressure applied. Ultimately you can kill people by strangulation although clearly that is not the allegation here.
I would concentrate on getting off and then don't go anywhere near her again so that she cannot make allegations against you to try to stop the contact order.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thanks. She is not saying it was strangulation - she has said my hands were on her neck, with no injury caused. I don't believe that she will change that.

Could our child be asked for a statement?

I was also wondering if it will show on DBS clearance if I am charged, but not convicted? (I realise it would definitely show if convicted).

Many thanks for your help. Once I have received your reply I would like to rate your answer and end our discussion. I would then like the discussion to be deleted, or made so that it cannot be viewed publicly online - please could you advise how to do that.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
I think it is quite unlikely they would ask a five year old for a statement. It is not impossible but they are not going to want to put a child that age in the witness box.
Even if you are not charged the fact of the allegation will still be on your PNC but it will be written in a way that reveals it was only an allegation. That will only show on enhanced checking which is not common.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69252
Experience: Over 5 years in practice
Jo C. and 2 other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thanks. My profession does require enhanced checking. I was previously arrested for ABH, but not charged, and that has not shown up on my enhanced DBS.

I would like now to delete this. Please advise how.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
I can ask customer services to do that but it will lock the question so you won't be able to come back with follow ups along the way.
You can still post new questions but I would normally deal with follow ups for free.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Just to clarify, my profession does require enhanced checking. I was previously arrested for ABH, but not charged, and that has not shown up on my enhanced DBS.

Re. deleting the post, I will leave it open so that I can ask a follow up if need be. Is there a way to make it only visible to me, not publicly visible?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
No, if it is visible at all then it is publicly visible but you are anonymous and actually you haven't really revealed anything that would identify anybody.
Enhanced checking should show up allegations. If it has not then it was either not deemed relevant or just not found its way onto your DBS yet.
It might not be relevant. It is only really the caring professions that would have an issue with violence.

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