Section 25A Crimes Act 1900 | Assault Causing Death


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Section 25A of the Crimes Act 1900 is Assault Causing Death and is extracted below.

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The Legislation

Section 25A of the Crimes Act 1900 deals with the offence of “assault causing death” and reads as follows:

25A Assault causing death

(1) A person is guilty of an offence under this subsection if:
(a) the person assaults another person by intentionally hitting the other person with any part of the person’s body or with an object held by the person, and
(b) the assault is not authorised or excused by law, and
(c) the assault causes the death of the other person.

Maximum penalty: Imprisonment for 20 years.

(2) A person who is of or above the age of 18 years is guilty of an offence under this subsection if the person commits an offence under subsection (1) when the person is intoxicated.

Maximum penalty: Imprisonment for 25 years.

(3) For the purposes of this section, an assault causes the death of a person whether the person is killed as a result of the injuries received directly from the assault or from hitting the ground or an object as a consequence of the assault.

(4) In proceedings for an offence under subsection (1) or (2), it is not necessary to prove that the death was reasonably foreseeable.

(5) It is a defence in proceedings for an offence under subsection (2):
(a) if the intoxication of the accused was not self-induced (within the meaning of Part 11A), or
(b) if the accused had a significant cognitive impairment at the time the offence was alleged to have been committed (not being a temporary self-induced impairment).

(6) In proceedings for an offence under subsection (2):
(a) evidence may be given of the presence and concentration of any alcohol, drug or other substance in the accused’s breath, blood or urine at the time of the alleged offence as determined by an analysis carried out in accordance with Division 4 of Part 10 of the Law Enforcement (Powers and Responsibilities) Act 2002 , and
(b) the accused is conclusively presumed to be intoxicated by alcohol if the prosecution proves in accordance with an analysis carried out in accordance with that Division that there was present in the accused’s breath or blood a concentration of 0.15 grams or more of alcohol in 210 litres of breath or 100 millilitres of blood.

(7) If on the trial of a person for murder or manslaughter the jury is not satisfied that the offence is proven but is satisfied that the person has committed an offence under subsection (1) or (2), the jury may acquit the person of murder or manslaughter and find the person guilty of an offence under subsection (1) or (2). The person is liable to punishment accordingly.

(8) If on the trial of a person for an offence under subsection (2) the jury is not satisfied that the offence is proven but is satisfied that the person has committed an offence under subsection (1), the jury may acquit the person of the offence under subsection (2) and find the person guilty of an offence under subsection (1). The person is liable to punishment accordingly.

(9) Section 18 does not apply to an offence under subsection (1) or (2).

(10) In this section,
“cognitive impairment” includes an intellectual disability, a developmental disorder (including an autistic spectrum disorder), a neurological disorder, dementia, a mental illness or a brain injury.

Why Sydney Criminal Lawyers®?

If you’ve been charged with assault causing death, it’s important to seek expert legal advice as soon as possible.

Being accused of assault causing death can be a stressful and upsetting experience, however with the help of our specialist criminal lawyers, you can ensure that you get the best possible defence in your assault case.

Sydney Criminal Lawyers® specialises in assault cases, and have successfully defended and won a large number of complex assault cases over the past 20 years.

No matter how serious the charges are, you can count on our highly respected Accredited Criminal Law Specialists to assist you in understanding the charges and advising you of your options, including any available defences that you can raise, such as duress, provocation or self-defence.

Your liberty is your most valuable asset – so don’t trust inexperienced lawyers to protect it. Call us today on (02) 9261 8881 and get Sydney’s assault experts on your side.