If you are convicted of assault you risk having a criminal record for the rest of your life. A criminal record could affect your ability to get a mortgage, travel, find employment, or volunteer. Pyzer Criminal Lawyers have successfully defended countless assault charges. We understand the significance of a criminal record, and we will prepare the best viable defence so that you avoid having a criminal record for the rest of your life.
The Criminal Code contains several types of assault charges:
Regardless of the specific assault charge, jail time and a criminal record can and will have a devastating impact. We know how stressful criminal charges can be, and how difficult it can be in finding an experienced assault lawyer. We offer a free consultation so that we can review your case with you and determine how we can offer the best legal defence.
The Criminal Code defines what assault is in section 265(1). You commit assault if:
Want to learn more about assault charges? Read our comprehensive guide on assault charges in Canada.
|Criminal Code Offence||Penalty for Indictable Conviction||Penalty for Summary Conviction|
|Assault s. 266||Maximum 5 years||Available|
|Assault causing bodily harm/assault with a weapon s. 267||Maximum 10 years||Available|
|Aggravated assault s.268||Maximum 14 years||Not available|
|Sexual assault s. 271|
Maximum 10 years if complainant over 16 years old
Maximum 14 years if complainant is under 16 years old
Maximum 18 months if complainant over 16 years old
Maximum two years less a day if complainant is under 16 years old
When you are convicted of an assault, not only do you face a significant number of years in jail, but you will have a permanent criminal record. Employers that require a criminal record check will see your assault charge. The ability to work, travel to the U.S., volunteer, rent a home, or pursue a career in teaching, childcare, or medicine will also be affected by a criminal record. If you are going through a custody battle with a former spouse, the judge can consider your criminal record as evidence of bad character.
The Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects your rights and freedoms if you are arrested. All government agents, including police and Crown prosecutors, must obey your rights and freedoms enshrined in the Charter. If your rights or freedoms are not obeyed, your assault charges may be dropped and will not show up on your criminal record. Other times, evidence may be excluded if your rights or freedoms were not obeyed. If you are charged with assault, remain silent and call an experienced assault lawyer. Pyzer Criminal Lawyers are Toronto assault lawyers with over 35 years of successfully defending assault charges.
If you have been arrested, section 10 of the Charter demands that police tell you of your right to speak to a lawyer. The police must tell you this as soon as possible. If the police do not inform you of your right to call a lawyer, the court may grant you a remedy. For instance, certain evidence from your case may be excluded, or the Crown may agree to enter a stay of proceedings.
Also under section 10 is the right to be informed why you have been arrested. As soon as possible after your arrest, police must tell you why you have been arrested. To learn more about unlawful arrest, read our comprehensive guide on unlawful arrest.
Often, one of the best ways you can help yourself if you have been arrested is to not talk to the police. If you are arrested, you will have to give the police your name, date of birth, and address, but you should not say anything else. We always recommend that you talk to a criminal defence assault lawyer before talking to the police.
Simple or common assault is found in section 265(1) of the Criminal Code and is the intentional application of force, either directly or indirectly, against a person without their consent. Simple assault is considered less serious than aggravated assault, assault causing bodily harm, or assault with a weapon.
Assault causing bodily harm and assault with a weapon are contained in section 267 of the Criminal Code and occur when a person commits simple assault with a weapon, or causes bodily harm to a victim. Assault causing bodily harm and assault with a weapon have more severe penalties than simple assault because they are considered more serious. Anything that can injure another person can be considered a weapon if the accused used it in a way to cause death or injury.
Aggravated assault is found in section 268(1) of the Criminal Code and is one of the most serious assault charge. Aggravated assault is when an accused wounds, maims, disfigures or endangers the life of another person.
Sexual assault is a serious crime in Canada found in section 271 of the Criminal Code. Sexual assault charges are often complex. Hiring an experienced sexual assault lawyer in Toronto is the best thing you can do if you are charged with sexual assault. To learn more about sexual assault, read our comprehensive guide on sexual assault charges in Canada.
If you acted in self defence, the Crown must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you were not acting in self defence. Section 34(1) of the Criminal Code states you are not guilty of an offence if:
In other words, if you assaulted another person because you needed to protect yourself, and your actions were reasonable in the circumstances, self defence may be an available defence.
If you and another person consent to fighting each other, assault will not be considered criminal. However, there cannot be consent where the alleged victim submits or does not resist the assault by reason of:
Get your defence started. Speak to an experienced assault lawyer.
The legal realm of criminal law can be complicated. The best thing you can do if you are charged with assault is hire an experienced assault lawyer. Pyzer Criminal Lawyers are dedicated assault lawyers. We are here to obtain the best possible outcome for all of our clients. We understand the seriousness of criminal charges, and how a criminal record will affect all aspects of your life. We will do everything we can to find the best legal defence and make the process less stressful for you. We have decades of experience defending assault charges, and we know all of the ins and outs of the legal system.
Oftentimes, a person will know that the police are investigating them for an assault. In other instances, a person may only have a hunch. Pyzer Criminal Lawyers can help in both circumstances. If you have a hunch the police are investigating you, call us to hear your options. We will be able to determine if the police are investigating you, and advise you on the next steps to take.
If you already know you are being investigated for assault or have a warrant out for your arrest, the best thing to do is call an experienced assault lawyer. As experienced defence lawyers, we recognize right away if there are gaps in the Crown’s case against you. If we are involved from the very beginning, we may be able to convince the Crown there is not enough evidence to proceed in prosecuting you.
If you are arrested for assault, the police may release you at the scene with a form that demands you be in court on a specific date to appear in front of a judge. Or, the police can arrest you and hold you in a jail cell until you can appear in front of a judge for a bail hearing. The point of a bail hearing is for a judge to decide whether you should be released from custody until your case goes to trial, or whether you stay in custody until your trial.
The police have to make sure you appear in front of a judge within 24 hours. If you or someone you know has been arrested and is being held on bail, call us right away. We will appear in court with the accused and do everything we can to have them released. It is better to get a criminal defence lawyer right away to help you with your bail hearing than trying to do it alone.
As experienced defence lawyers, we recognize right away if there are gaps in the Crown’s case against you. If we are involved from the very beginning, we may be able to convince the Crown there is not enough evidence to proceed with the charges against you.
The young offender accused, Q.A., was charged with one count of assault causing bodily harm. The allegations were that during the lunch hour, while at school, Q.A., got into a confrontation with one of his classmates. The alleged victim reported that the accused approached him, punched him in the face and then pushed him down a flight of stairs. The alleged victim had to be taken to the hospital where he received multiple stitches to his head.
Mr. Pyzer represented Q.A. and was successful in having the charge against the accused withdrawn upon his completion of court-sanctioned extra-judicial measures, which included a letter of apology and mediation with the complainant. Q.A. does not have a criminal record in relation to this incident and there was no finding of guilt made by the court.
Whether you have been charged before, or are facing charges for the first time, it is always frightening and distressing. Being convicted of assault will leave lasting implications on you and your family. You do not need to fight your charges alone - call Pyzer Criminal Lawyers to handle your case. We will advocate for your every step of the way and find the best legal defence possible. Contact Pyzer Criminal Lawyers for a free case evaluation today.