It’s great that you can join me today I want to talk about a review of section 267 of the Criminal Code, assault, bodily harm, causing bodily harm. We’ll talk a little bit about sentencing, dual procedure offence and what people can expect when they face this type of charge including some defences. So, assault causing bodily harm, what is it? It is where there’s an intentional application of force without consent, so the other person is not consenting it resulting in injuries to the other person, who caused injury. 

So the injury definition it has to be more than trifling or transient. So that’s a pretty low-level test. I mean, there are cases in Ontario where significant bruises qualify as bodily harm. Most police if it’s mere bruising tend to lay the assault charge but I have seen it laid as the assault causing bodily harm with bruises, but clearly if there’s cuts, broken bones, significant injuries, it is a bodily harm component with the caveat that bruises may, and there is conflicting case law in this, have caused the bodily harm. What are the defenses to this? Well, there’s self-defense I suppose you could say it didn’t happen, say where it was made up. There’s another defense where you were actually protecting yourself or protecting your property and bodily harm and sued. 

There’s also situations where bodily harm was caused by an accident but the other victim perceives it was intentional is what’s called a hybrid offence, meaning the crown can elect summarily or they can elect by indictment, think of a diagnose being a more serious type bodily harm summary as being lesser or if it’s historical, it it happened over a year ago, then the crown is required actually to elect by indictment. The maximum sentence for an indictable ABH, that’s what the criminal lawyers and judges say and crowns is 10 year maximum, okay? 

The maximum for summary conviction is two years less a day, you could be facing up to a $5,000 fine and there’s a whole range of sentences that are possible depending on the level of injury. Let’s talk about that. Let’s talk about that bruising case, some significant bruising well, most cases of sentencing an assault bodily harm you’re facing a jail term, you need to, the courts want general deterrence and denunciation. Even on a bruising case, you may face a jail term you might not but anything beyond that you’re clearly facing jail. So I’ll give you an example. 

Let’s say you broke someone’s leg it’s a first offence, so I mean, you’re facing I think six months for a broken leg would be a light sentence wouldn’t it. With the range of sentence I can see 9 as an example. Well, it really depends on the severity of the injuries, the more aggravated the situation, no pun intended is actually aggravated assault. Which is where your wounding causing very serious injury not minimize ABH, assault bodily harm because I have seen situations with multiple broken bones where a person’s spending a few years in jail, it’s a serious offence. So that’s it in a nutshell, you know quick review of assault causing bodily harm under the Canadian Criminal Code. 

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By Published On: March 1, 2024Last Updated: March 1, 2024Categories: Assault, General, Video

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