Have you or a loved one recently been charged with Assault with a Weapon? If so, you may be confronting a life-changing situation. We are here to help.
What is Assault with a Weapon?
Assault is the application of force or the threat of force against another individual without their consent and without legal justification or excuse.
Assault with a Weapon is a very broad criminal category. "Begging" for money while carrying a weapon, for example, is considered an assault. The crime of Assault with a Weapon is the application or threatened application of force against another person where a weapon is used as a tool in respect of the force.
Waving a knife in the direction of a person, pointing a firearm, or striking another individual with an object can all constitute an Assault with a Weapon. Simply having a weapon openly on your person while taking part in an assault can result in more severe charges levied against you. Even the threat of using a weapon is an offence potentially punishable by imprisonment.
What is a "Weapon"?
Technically speaking, anything can be a weapon. Guns, knives, or clubs are the most obvious examples when talking about this type of charge, but there are precedents for persons being charged with this offence for threatening or striking other persons with things like snowballs, frozen turkeys, loaves of bread, or even water.
What if someone Consents?
Public policy would mandate that, in the vast majority of circumstances, the use of weapons in a consensual situation could not be justified even where the allegedly assaulted party consented. "Consent," a possible defence to an Assault simpliciter charge, will therefore rarely, if ever, succeed in respect of an allegation of Assault with a Weapon. However, some activities, like certain sporting events, may be deemed an exception to this rule, as might very minor contact with less serious "weapons."
What is the Penalty for Assault with a Weapon?
This offence is considered a very serious crime and therefore consequences are severe. Under section 267 of the Criminal Code of Canada, the maximum sentence for assault with a weapon is ten years in prison. Should the Crown proceed by way of summary conviction, the maximum sentence would be 18 months imprisonment.
If you are found guilty of Assault with a Weapon, the impact can seriously affect your employment prospects, travelling plans and future.
Caramanna, Friedberg LLP has years of experience successfully representing individuals accused of Assault with a Weapon. Our firm has a track record of helping hundreds of clients to dramatically reduce the penalties they face, or eliminate charges completely.
If you or someone you care about has been charged with this offence, we are here to assist you 24/7. Call us today for help at (416) 924-5969.