Withdrawing a Reckless Conduct Endangering Serious Injury Charge

This is a case study on withdrawing a Reckless Conduct Endangering Serious Injury charge

Our client was driving in his vehicle in moderate to heavy traffic. There was a car in front of him which pushed into his lane. The rear windshield of that vehicle smashed and the driver was of the belief that the client was responsible for throwing something at it. The driver got out of the vehicle and approached the client, yelling at him to get out and exchange details. The client refused.

What is alleged to have occured?
They exchanged some terse words and the client attempted to drive around the man to leave the situation. The driver was standing at the front of the car. As the client edged forward, he was moving forward in a nudging motion. The driver nearly lost his balance. The driver then gets on top of the vehicle and is kneeling on the bonnet, and has gripped on the top of the bonnet near the windscreen wipers.

The client has pressed the accelerator, with the fellow on top. The driver then gets off the car and continues to abuse the client, and attempts to open the driver’s side door. Seeing an opportunity to drive away, the client drove off quickly. He was charged with Criminal Damage for the windscreen and Reckless Conduct Endangering Serious Injury for driving with the man on the bonnet.

What happened at court?
Kristina Kothrakis acted on the client’s behalf at the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court. For this case, she succeeded in withdrawing the Reckless Conduct Endangering Serious Injury charge as well the Criminal Damage charge.

This was a highly unusual and bizarre set of facts. Our client conducted a record of interview with the police where he denied throwing anything at the vehicle which caused the windscreen to break. He indicated that he had his two-year old daughter in the car and did not do anything which would have aggravated the man. He was becoming frightened of the increasingly agitated and aggressive demeanour of the driver and was wanting to remove himself from the situation.

The client was shocked when the man jumped on the front of his bonnet. He indicated that he instinctively pressed the accelerator and thought that it might throw him off.

Kristina conducted a summary case conference with the police. She highlighted the fact that there was no evidence of any implement which may have been used by the client to break the window. She pointed out on the reading of the materials that it looks as though the client was actually the victim in the matter, and should not have been charged. People are often told not to engage in aggressive road disputes, and they should just drive away. The client tried to do that and was physically stopped by the man.

What was the result?
Initially, the police were sympathetic to a degree, but said that the manner in which the client drove away placed the driver at risk of serious injury. They offered him a diversion instead. Kristina pressed the issue with the police and prepared a written submission outlining her position, and why the police should withdraw completely. She was ultimately successful in withdrawing the Reckless Conduct Endangering Serious Injury charge as well the Criminal Damage charge.

Elements of Reckless Conduct Endangering Serious Injury:
  • The accused voluntarily engaged in a conduct which placed a person in danger of serious injury.
  • The accused engaged in that conduct recklessly in that the accused foresaw, as a reasonable person would foresee, the conduct as placing another person in danger of serious injury.
  • The accused had no lawful excuse for engaging in such conduct.
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Kristina KothrakisKristina Kothrakis

Kristina has significant experience in criminal trials and also holds a degree in Science, majoring in Psychology, an invaluable area of knowledge, as many of her clients suffer from psychological disorders.

Kristina strives to achieve the best possible result for all her clients. Skilled, decisive and assertive, Kristina demonstrates dedication, care and professionalism at all times.

View Kristina Kothrakis’ profile.
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 XXX/XXX/XXX