Updated: Feb 21
Date and location of Offence(s)
March 2020, Doncaster
Ringwood Magistrates’ Court
Our client was charged with Criminal Damage. The background to the incident that resulted in the criminal charges was ongoing conflict between my client and his former housemate.
Such was the degree of conflict that he resolved to live elsewhere to avoid further conflict. In his haste to relocate he left important belongings behind and had made attempts to retrieve these items from his housemate, however his attempts were to no avail.
Unfortunately, and due to mounting frustration at not being able to retrieve his property he attempted to open the front door of his former home but breaking a window.
Upon discovering his former housemate was in the house (occupying another room, and apparently oblivious to my client’s repeated knocking on the front door), he promptly left.
When later interviewed by police he made full admissions.
Based on breaking the front door window, my client was charged with Criminal damage.
Factors relevant to client
Our client had no previous criminal history and was 57 years old as at the date of the offending. Our client had an excellent employment history.
Given the criminality of our client’s actions was at the lower end and combined with his otherwise good character (as demonstrated his continuous employment and lack of criminal history), it was identified early that a diversion would be an appropriate outcome.
Diversion was not initially recommended by police, and consequently a detailed written submission was made to the prosecution advocating for diversion. In addition, the prosecution had charged our client with criminal damage (an indictable offence) whereas the lesser charge of wilful damage (a summary offence) was more appropriate.
The matter was recommended for diversion, the prosecution agreed to withdraw the offence of Criminal damage, and our client received the benefit of a Diversion plan with conditions to be of good behaviour and to pay for the repair of the window.
The benefit to our client in receiving a Diversion was that he avoided a criminal record.
Written by Shaun Pascoe, Director, Pascoe Criminal Law.