Not Guilty x 3: Client acquitted without a trial, costs awarded

We recently concluded acting for a client who was charged by police with three offences of disorderly, obstruct police, and fail to leave licensed premises. The charges arose from an incident where our client defended their friend from an assault whilst waiting for take-away food. Our client remained at the scene and attempted to offer assistance to their friend, who was being spoken to by police. However, the client was forced to leave the scene on police direction, as police alleged he was interfering with their process of investigating the scene. The client left, but unfortunately later returned to the scene to collect their friend’s take-away food, as the friend was being arrested. This appeared to be with the permission of police, who actually handed the take-away food to the client.

Following this, our client left the scene and was several hundred meters away when approached by one of the police from the scene of the incident, who purported to arrest the client for remaining at the scene after being directed to leave. What followed was an ugly scene in which the client was shoved into a metal letterbox, taken to the ground, and had their head kneed into a brick wall, all under the guise of a ‘lawful arrest’ for returning to the scene after being told to leave. The client unfortunately suffered a permanent injury to their face from the unlawful assault from the police officer.

We listed the matter for a trial and obtained full disclosure. It was clear from the disclosure that not only had the client not committed any of the charged offences, but the client had been unlawfully assaulted by the arresting officer. James Jackson sent a lengthy and comprehensive submission to the police outlining the clear deficiencies with the prosecution case, and also annexing proof of the injuries the officer had occasioned to the client. After reviewing the submission, the prosecution were persuaded to withdraw each of the three charges against our client.

At the court hearing, James Jackson managed to secure a full acquittal for the client, rather than just a withdrawal of charges. This meant the client could never be prosecuted again for the charges arising from this incident. The client was also awarded a substantial amount of legal costs.

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