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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71055
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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My husband has been charged with common assault section

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My husband has been charged with common assault section 39 by beating in two different dates I am the victim, He has passed his first court hearing which he pleaded not guilty, despite me withdrawing my police statement CPS still went ahead with the case and he is now due for trial which is due in a week, I have been summonsed to give evidence, What likely is going to happen if i ignore the witness summon letter and i don't go to court? I can give more detail if needed.
Thank you
Hello why do you wish to ignore this matter?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I don't want my husband to get criminal conviction, I have already mentioned this in my withdrawal statement and I said I am not willing to go to court, I want to resume my marriage.
ok I will have to pass this over to a colleague, who is a criminal barrister - she may be offline right now but will be on at some point today so you will get a notification when she replies. Thanks
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
okay Thank you very much. Thats highly appreciated. I will be waiting. Is it going to be today?
Yes, I think she may be online now actually, no need to rpely whlst you wait as it will just lock the quesiton back on to me, many thanks
Hi. That would be me. Have you done this before?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Police have been involved in the family one more time 4 years ago, but the matter did not reach the court, my partner was released with a caution.
What was the caution for then?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I don't know, he was kept in police station for few hours then he was released I am not sure whether it was caution or no.
No, but what was the allegation to the police?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Are you talking about now? or the first time when police was involved ? Sorry if I am not understanding you properly.
No, the matter that lead to the caution?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I don't remember it since it was very long time ago, but as far as I remember it was more verbal argument it was not physical. I involved police that time police came and arrested him kept him in police station for few hours then they called me that he is coming back home.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
But honestly I dont remember it was very long ago, If I involved police it might have been physical as well but I did not have any injuries or anything.
Ok. It is a caution for common assault.What did you allege happened this time?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
That he has punched me few times, he pushed me back holding my neck but the police asked me whether i was breathless I said no, He has kicked me also, and I have mentioned about another incident as well to the police which was a month before this current one. that is the reason he has two charges of beating on two different dates. I have a child as well who was present at that time. The matter of alcohol and canabis have also been mentioned in my police statement.
Okay. That is all I need to know. They are not going to drop this. I can see at least three aggravating features immediately and that is without taking into account the previous caution. If you have received a summons then not attending court will be a contempt of court. It is quite unlikely that they would prosecute that. I have only ever seen that once and that involved a woman who had been a real problem for the police and their resources. What they may do is seek an adjournment and get a witness warrant for your arrest. That is much more likely in particular because there was a child present at the time of this incident. The witness warrant does have limitations as it is only effective if they can find you on the morning of trial. I'm afraid the only way to avoid this for the future is not to make reports to the police. Can I clarify anything for you? Jo
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks, ***** ***** mean,
1.they will not drop the charge if I don't appear in first trial?
2. they will get one more adjournment?
3. Do you think they will prosecute me If I ignore the witness summon? how much is it likely? on scale of 1-100% ?
4. Will they arrest me in this first trial? or they will do it in the next one?
5. what if my husband plead guilty in his trial ? do you think he will be prisoned? is it likely? will the court decide the case there and then? or they will get another adjournment for sentencing as well?
6. You mentioned " if they find me in morning of trial" are you talking about this first trial or the second one? if they don't find me to arrest me will they still look for me after court hearing?Thanks
1 it is quite unlikely that they would2 usually they get one3 no, but what they will do is seek a witness warrant the or arrest4 probably the morning of the next one5 it is likely that he would be imprisonment but what will happen is that social services will be informed and probably will have an interest in your childcare arrangements6 there is never any point in arresting witnesses after the court hearing unless they are going to be prosecuted for content. If it is just a witness warrant to put them before the court to force them to give evidence then the only time it is worth doing that is the morning of trial or the night before.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
1.In reply to my 5th question you said it is LIKELY that he will get imprisoned ? But I only had few scratches in my arm. Do you think he will go to prison for section 39?
2. Social services have already been involved and they are working with me and my husband so far they don't have any concerns.
3. So If I don't go to court in first trial, and stay away in next one so they can't arrest me, don't you think they will prosecute me for ignoring the court two times?
That should have read is not likely. People do go to prison for battery and this isn't just a few scratches. You alleged repeated punching, pressure to the neck and kicking which took place in front of a child. This is nothing even remotely like a few scratches case. They could prosecute you but as i have said really that is reserved for people who are always doing this. If you don't make any subsequent reports to the police you should be fine.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
So you meant NOT LIKELY? for him to be imprisoned?
It crosses the threshold but he will probably be OK unless you do this again.This time he will probably be fine.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It will definitely not going to happen again never, it is certainly a big lesson for me.
I have seen his statement which his solicitor has sent him, in there it states he has no previous convictions or cautions, plus he has mentioned that I used to self harm and he has stated that I was the one who attacked him first, and ripped his t-shirt which is with police at the moment, he stated he has warned to hit me but he did not have any intention to do so, since I attacked him he was trying to calm me down and i got the bruise in my arm.
Do you think his statement will bring any difference ? or they will not listen to him?
Yes, I understand. Nobody law abiding predicts it will get this far. The professional accuser knows just how far the police will go on the other hand.The Court will listen to him. He might well be acquitted.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Dearest Jo, Since its the first time I am going through this, and as I said it definitely is a big lesson for me it will never happen in the future, taking all the information I given to you, what do you think is the best option for me to do? I know you will not advise me to commit contempt of court, which one do you advise me to do at this stage? in my particular situation?
1. Should I ignore the witness summons?
2. Or should I go to the court and refuse going into the witness box?
3. if I ignore the summons, Should i stay else where on the night of trial? or I am fine for the first time to stay home?
4. What if they call me should i answer them?
5. They have not even served the summons for me properly, they have not paid the travel expense for me, plus my family is away for holiday they have not even asked me for childcare arrangements. Do you think the summons have served properly?
I can't really advise you to do any of those things as they are all unlawful. All I can do is tell you the consequences. If you ignore the witness summons then that is a contempt of court but it will not be prosecuted. What they may do is seek a witness warrant for your arrest. If you refuse to go into the witness box then there is an offence that can be used and sometimes ears even for people on first incidents. It is probably a good idea to stay elsewhere. It doesn't really matter whether you answer them or not except that they will put pressure on you if you do answer the phone. Yes, they have served the summons correctly. Your family and childcare circumstances are not their consideration.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks for the help,
I have decided not to go to court at all, and ignore the summons, because I don't have that much courage to go there and not speak as I don't have any experience in doing such thing in past, I think its better that I stay away, But you said they will seek a witness warrant for me, will they arrest me right after the first trial hearing and keep me till next trial? or they will wait to take me to court on the day of next trial? Can I come back home safely after first trial ? will they not arrest me?As I mentioned about my husband's statement do you think the court will take this into account? is it likely or unlikely that he will be acquitted in first trial?Thanks
As a rule that is more effective.there is never any point in arresting witnesses after the court hearing unless they are going to be prosecuted for content. If it is just a witness warrant to put them before the court to force them to give evidence then the only time it is worth doing that is the morning of trial or the night before.Magistrates do tend to convict more often than they should. It depends what he has to support it. If his shirt was torn then that is a fairly strong point in his favour.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Okay thank you very much, I will ask more questions if I need, then I will rate you.Thanks a lot for now.
No problem.I will be happy to offer more but please remember to rate my answer.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I will definitely rate you once my questions are finished, you have been very helpful so far.thanks a lot .
No problem and all the best. Please remember to rate my answer. Remember that I am always available to help with your questions. Even if I am in Court I will usually pick up a question within 12 hours. For future information, please start your question with ‘For Jomo1972’.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hello JO,
I hope you are doing well..
I have definitely decided not to go to court at all and ignore witness summons but I am very scared that they dont prosecute me..
1. Can you please tell me how much are the chances of being prosecuted in my particular situation? on a scale of 1% to 100% how much is the possibility of me being prosecuted?
2. if they adjourn the case for second trial and they seek a witness warrant for me, and I ignore the court for second time, do you think they will prosecute me for ignoring court for second time? i am really scared i just need to know the possibilities.
3. If i get prosecuted may i know what is the punishment for contempt of court?Thanks a lot
I will be delighted to continue with this but I am concerned that this is becoming a very long thread that was started several days ago and you have not rated.I will make a further offer.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71055
Experience: Over 5 years in practice
Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I rated you, can you answer my questions now please.Thanks
OK.1 As I have said, it is not likely that you would be prosecuted for contempt.2 As i have said, it is not likely that you will be prosecuted for contempt.3 Contempt carries up to three months custody and people do generally get custodial sentences although usually only for 7- 14 days.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you very much for the reply,
1. How do i get to know they have seeked a witness warrant for me?
2. If they do seek a witness warrant, will they infor me that i have been issued with a witness warrant for second trial date?
3. Do they seek witness warrants for both first and second trial? Or just the second one?
4. As i said I am staying away from home on tuesday so they cant arrest me, should i just be away from home? Or city as well?Thanks in advance
1 You wouldn't necessarily until they execute it.2 No. No point. Counter productive.3 Not in every case. Usually only for women who have been a real drain on resources.4 I cannot advise you to commit a contempt of court,.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you very much for all the support and advise.. I have decided not to go court at all.. And the trial is on Tuesday.. I will update you about the outcome.. In the meantime if i have any more questions.. Ill ask..Thanks a lot
No problem.All the best.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you.
No problem.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
As promised for update, Just writting to say that i didnt go to court and the case got dismissed.Thank you very much for all help and support very much appreciated,Although am a bit worried, do you think they can still prosecute me for ignoring witness summons? Or the mattet is dismissed so there is no problem for me as well?Thank you so much.
Glad it worked out.yes, they could. No they won't.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you very much.So in case if they prosecute me how will i know about it? Will they just come and arrest me?
Yes, but it won't happen.The police won't randomly do it. It will be court directed.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Okay thank you very much, you have been sooooo much helpful to me God bless!So the chances are less that ill be prosecuted? Sorry for so much questions I am just very happy right now but at the same time a bit worried.Thanks a lot
Yes, that is right.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Okay fingers crossed.Thank you once again. You have been soooo helpful to me in this hard situation of me.
No problem. All the best.