Diversion for Prohibited Weapon Offences

This is a case study on a diversion for prohibited weapon offences.

What is alleged to have occured?
Our client bought a bottle of pepper spray online and took it to a pub with his friends. As a joke, he sprayed it. The pepper spray went through the air vents and affected 50 patrons. The ambulance, police and fire brigade were called. The client was caught on CCTV and the police approached him and asked if he was the one who sprayed the pepper spray. He admitted that it was him. He was then charged with various weapon offences.

The client was terrified because he had never been charged with a criminal offence before. Fortunately, the police gave him a diversion notice. Diversion is a fantastic opportunity to avoid a criminal record. The client approached us to assist him with his diversion application.

What happened at court?
We acted on the client’s behalf at the Ringwood Magistrates’ Court. The charges were:

We spoke to the client about why he offended. He explained that it was a silly joke and he didn’t realise that the consequences would be so bad. We assisted him to fill in a diversion questionnaire, which included explaining the reason for the offending and the impact a criminal record would have on his future.

We also helped the client gather character references, which showed that this offence was an isolated incident. Further, we encouraged him to get a mental health plan and see a counsellor because he had been through a traumatic upbringing.

On the day of the court hearing, we attended the diversion interview with the client and helped him explain his story to the diversion coordinator.

What was the result?
The coordinator was impressed with the remorse he showed and his willingness to take responsibility of the offending. The magistrate granted the diversion application without needing to hear submissions. This is because we prepared for the application by gathering relevant materials early on.

The client was incredibly relieved that the application for diversion for prohibited weapon offences was granted. He had avoided a criminal record which would have impacted his prospects of future employment and his ability to travel. He was grateful to have been given a second chance.

Elements of Prohibited Weapons:
  • The accused had a prohibited weapon.
  • The accused did not have an exception under section 8B of the Act.
Related case studies
DISCLAIMER: This is a real case study of an actual case from our files. Details pertaining to the client have been changed to protect their privacy. The sentence imposed and the charge have not been altered. These case studies are published to demonstrate real outcomes and give an indication of possible tariffs in Court. We do not guarantee a similar case on these charges will get the same result. Please note that we post results at our discretion, therefore while many case studies are average results, others are notable for their exceptional outcomes. PUBLISHED 18/09/2019