Assault is a severe kind of offence in Canada. At first, it seems to be a simple act, but with time, things become complicated for the accused when one looks at its consequences, such as dealing with criminal record upon conviction. According to the Canadian legal system, there’s a significant difference between violence that ends with mere public disapproval and the one which results in serious repercussions.
First, we will discuss what assault offences or charges mean followed by a description of different types of assault offences or charges in Canada:
What’s an Assault Charge?
Assault is characterized as a criminal act that is trialed in court and is one of the most severe violations of law any Canadian can commit. When the accused is declared guilty, it results in criminal record coupled with other legal processing such as fingerprint records.
The basic definition of assault in Canada is the aim to apply some force to somebody else directly or indirectly, without the consent of that individual. It means that a mere threat to attack someone is enough for an assault charge to be legally delivered with or without actual injury occurred.
Being the most basic kind of assault charge in Canada, simple assault can be persecuted in two ways. First, a summary conviction which is considered to be a less severe type can be processed directly by a judge without needing to arrange a jury or declaring a jail sentence for the defendant. Second, an indictable offence is a more severe kind of a simple assault that requires more formal court proceedings.
Assault leading to Bodily Harm
In case of noticeable injuries caused to the victim, an assault charge can be filed against the accused to cause bodily harm. Like simple assault, it can also be persecuted in two ways; the first one is summary conviction resulting maximum of 18-month jail time, and the second as an indictable offence leading to 10 years in prison.
Weapon assault is a threat or an act of violence that is carried out using a weapon like a gun, knife, or any other equipment. Like the previous two types, this offence can also be carried out in two ways; summary judgment and an indictable infringement resulting in maximum prison sentences.
Aggravated assault is one of the most severe kinds of assaults done in Canada that leads to life-long disabilities, or in some cases, even the death of the sufferer. It’s always considered an indictable felony, which results in a maximum of 14 years in prison for the accused.
An intent to sexually threaten or attack somebody without his or her consent, this act of violence is termed as sexual assault. It’s also processed in two ways; a summary conviction and an indictable crime resulting in the sentence starting from 18-month jail time to even 10-year maximum prison time.
Aggravated Sexual Assault
This kind of offence is one step ahead of aggravated assault, with far more severe consequences and bodily harm caused to the victim’s body. It’s always termed as an indictable crime. When a weapon is used during this felony, a minimum 4-year sentence is given to the accused upon conviction.
Assaulting a Police Officer
As the name suggests, an act of violence committed against a police officer is persecuted in the court of law. It can result in either a summary conviction or an indictable felony, depending on the severity of the action.
There are different plausible defences to various kinds of assault charges that could either result in reducing the severity of the charge or withdrawing the indictment altogether. One of the most common legal defence is that of self-defence.
Always hire the services of experienced and qualified criminal defence lawyers operating in your surrounding area to bring swift resolution to your legal problems.