Theft and Making a Threat to Kill

This is a case study involving charges of Theft and Making a Threat to Kill.

What is alleged to have occured?
Our client was charged with one minor offence (Theft), one more serious offence (Making a Threat to Kill), plus a number of breaching bail conditions. The matter proceeded as a consolidated plea of guilty. It also proceeded on a number of occasions as the magistrate and lawyers were both committed to trying to get the best outcome for the client. He was young and had no priors for the Threats to Kill offence.

What happened at court?
We represented the client at the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court. The charges against the client were:

Offences involving the mistreatment of police officers or any emergency worker on or off duty are extremely serious. However for this case, we successfully secured a sentence of diversion for the charges of assaulting police officers and resisting arrest. Factors that contributed to this sentence are that the client did not have any prior criminal history, worked full time, and was having difficulties with alcoholism and mental health.

We advised the client that an independent forensic assessment from a psychologist may be a compelling piece of material to present to the court. This would assist in contextualising the incident as being isolated. It would also help the case by showing the court further insight into the client’s mental health and alcohol issues.

We also reached out to the arresting officer. We had a frank discussion about some of the client’s personal struggles and suggested that diversion may be an appropriate source of action. As previously mentioned, offending against police officers is treated very seriously and spitting on an officer is simply not acceptable behaviour. However we were able to carefully craft and present the client’s instructions alongside extra support of the psychological document.

What was the result?
The client received a surprisingly low sentence. This was not a common outcome considering that his offences also breached a County Court Community Corrections Order which he received for a violent offending, and especially considering that they occurred in a family violence context.

The court ultimately imposed a good behaviour bond with a number of conditions for the client to complete.
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 24/04/2018