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Simon, Solicitor
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 58
Experience:  I'm a solicitor specialising in criminal defence work. I have been in private practice for 5 years.
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Need to know charges for common assault.

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I was charged for common assault the following codes are on the charge sheet can you please tell me what they mean please. cccjs.code.cj88116 acpo. pnld.code.h4302 apparently I committed these whilst defending myself .i.e. self defence I was struck first.


The codes simply refer to the charge administered, which is assault & battery under the s.39 of the Criminal Justice Act 1988. Hence CJ88, naming the Act. The 116 is simply a CJS code for the offence.

ACPO again references the offence under the Association of Chief Police Officers system.

H4302 is the Police National Legal Database code for assault & battery.

Essentially, all of the codes are references for various organisations for the same offence, assault & battery.

Hope that assists but please feel free to ask any follow up questions that occur.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.

I have to attend court on the 17.03.2011 I was told by the sgt who charged me that it was the lesser assault charge What could be possible to get awarded in court,

Also at top of letter is legislation contrary to section 39 of the criminal justice act 1988

Will I get fined?


Quite correct, it's the least serious assault charge. S.39 of the Criminal Justice Act 1988 provides for common assault being a summary only offence, i.e. only triable in the magistrates court (can't go to Crown Court).

Maximum sentence for common assault is 6 months imprisonment or a fine up to 5000 pounds. Guilty please give credit, i.e. a lesser sentence but it sounds like you will not be pleading guilty. Please be aware that self-defence can be tricky and practically you have to satisfy the court that any action you took to defend yourself was entirely proportionate to the threat you faced.

If convicted, sentencing for a first offence could be as low as a conditional discharge (requirement to be of good behaviour for a period, 12 months usually), or a fine. If the matter is a domestic issue, usual sentence is a community order with the requirement to undertake anger management etc. Custody is rare for common assault, usually only if it's a worrying assault, i.e. on a vulnerable person, or there is a long history of offending behaviour.

Provided it's not domestic or particularly serious and you have no previous history of offending, I'd expect a conditional discharge or fine.

Hope that assists, feel free to ask anything else that occurs.


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