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Alice H
Alice H, Solicitor/Partner
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 2692
Experience:  Partner in national law firm
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Sentence violence charge. No previous convictions.

Resolved Question:

Typical sentence for domestic violence charge. No previous convictions.
Expected long term effects on career in UK and travel / work internationally
Is the sentence recorded permanently or could work abroad be considered after a certain time period.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: UK Law
Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.

Hello and welcome to JustAnswer.

What was the violence? And the sentence?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Slap on face. Sentence unknown. That's what I want you to tell me.

1. Accused of slapping and grabbing by throat and of attempted theft domestic

2. Accused claims not guilty and admits only one slap.

Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.

If the accused pleads guilty to assault on the basis of one slap and that is accepted by the prosecution then the sentence may be a fine. This is on the basis that no other aggravating features are present e.g. presence of children, serious injury, threat of weapon. Pleading guilty early attracts a discount on the sentence.

If the accused is found guilty after trial the discount on sentence no longer applies. If the Court decides it was a slap and grabbing of throat the sentence is more likely to be a community based penalty such as unpaid work. The theft of the phone is an aggravating feature and/or may result in a separate penalty.

However, in both circumstances, a prison sentence can be ruled out if the assaults are of a minor nature, no injury has been caused and there is no use of a weapon and the accused is a person of good character.

The other question is about the conviction impacting the accused's career and travel. If a fine or community sentence is imposed this is disclosable for 5 years. So if a UK employer poses the question about previous convictions/criminal record, this conviction would have to be declared. Failure to do so could itself result in a further prosecution for obtaining a job fraudulently. After 5 years the conviction is spent and no longer has to be revealed in normal day to day situations.

I cannot really help as far as international travel is concerned. The rules of entry for each country varies and you would have to see whether they will grant a visa or not. Some countries, such as the US, have rules about not allowing entry to persons with violence and drug convictions. You could apply and appeal the decision but the point is that entry is not automatic and mostly subject to scrutiny.

I hope this helps.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you Alex. That is understood.

The accuser has 2 witnesses to the violence (close friends). Does this mean a not guilty stance would be a waste of time for me?

Also, I have 2 witnesses who will testify the accuser has struck me on 2 separate (previous) occasions. I am not prone to pursuing these issues and have let these matters pass before. However would it help my case to bring counter charges against my accuser?

Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.
Its debatable whether you could use the past history. If it amounts to 'bad character' the Court may not allow you to use it unless certain conditions are met. For example, it is important explanatory evidence or significant probative value. If you are intending to use this history you would have to make an application before the trial on a bad character application form which can be found on the Courts and Tribunal Service website.
If there are two witnesses corroborating the alleged victims account the chances of conviction are higher unless you can undermine their credibility. In any event if the slap is accepted that in itself amounts to an assault unless, for example, it was done in self defence.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


I note from the time difference you are located out west. Are your responses based on Scots law?

Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.
Actually I'm based in Hertfordshire just north of London.
My answers are applicable in Scotland. The legislation is the same in England and Scotland on the issues you've raised.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks Alex,

You refer to past history. The violence against me was 2 days before the date I was accused of striking the accuser.

It actually took the accuser 4 days to report the incident to the police after the event.

Would this have any bearing on matters?

Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.

Please describe the circumstances of both incidents.

By the way have you been charged? Do you have a solicitor?

Alice H, Solicitor/Partner
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 2692
Experience: Partner in national law firm
Alice H and other UK Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Alex,

For ease of discussion I indicated I was the accused. Sorry about that, it is actually my daughter (22) who is accused and her now ex - partner (female, 25) who is the accuser.

She was arrested on the 17th last week and granted a solicitor while in custody. She has submitted a not guilty plea and will go to court in March 2013.

My daughter advises she was hit by the accuser twice , once while she was driving her car (the two witnesses were seated in the rear seats of the car) and again later that evening when at the accusers apartment. The accuser was drinking.

She cannot recall why (I think a fairly trivial matter) but it was on the same day (10th October, 2 days before my daughter hit the accuser on the 12th).

I will contact the solicitor appointed to establish the priority my daughter will be afforded as I do want the best in the business to control the case.

I am presently traveling south by train and the connection is erratic at best, ***** ***** with me. Mean tine thank you for your interest.

Expert:  Alice H replied 3 years ago.
Thanks for the additional information.
The background may, therefore, be relevant to your daughters state of mind.
Provocation is not a defence in these cases (only applies to murder) but she could use this as mitigation or part of her defence.
The Court is more likely to be sympathetic to a person who snapped after a period of bullying.
Happy to discuss further. Please let me know.
Alice H, Solicitor/Partner
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 2692
Experience: Partner in national law firm
Alice H and other UK Law Specialists are ready to help you

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