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Firing at dwelling houses or buildings


Contact Armstrong Legal:
Sydney: (02) 9261 4555

John Sutton

An offence under section 93GA(1) of the Crimes Act arises when: "A person fires a firearm at a dwelling-house or other building with reckless disregard for the safety of any person."

The maximum penalty for a charge under section 93GA(1) is 14 years imprisonment. If the offence was committed during a public disorder, the maximum penalty is 16 years imprisonment.

If the offence was committed in the course of an organised criminal activity, the maximum penalty is 16 years.

This matter is a strictly indictable offence. This means that it can only be dealt with in the District Court.

If you have been charged with an offence under this section, we recommend that you seek legal advice promptly so that you can properly determine your options. Our lawyers are highly experienced in criminal law and they will be able to ascertain the strength of the prosecution case against you.

In NSW, a court can impose any of the following penalties for an aggravated possession of unregistered firearm in a public place charge.

You will find a brief description of each of these penalties at the bottom of this page.

What is the law part and the short description?

On the police facts sheet and the court attendance notice that you may have received you will have a reference to the law part and a short description of offence. These references help the court and the legal profession to identify the exact offence you have been charged with. The law part and short description for this offence are set out in the table below:

Law Part Short Description
64875 Fire firearm at dwelling-house disregard for safety(DV)-SI
52812 Fire firearm at dwelling-house with disregard for safety-SI
64876 Fire firearm at not dwelling disregarding safety (DV)-SI
52813 Fire firearm at other than dwelling disregarding safety-SI
64877 Fire firearm at dwelling-house during public disorder DV-SI
60715 Fire firearm at dwelling-house during public disorder-SI
64878 Fire firearm at non dwelling during public disorder (DV)-SI
60716 Fire firearm at non dwelling-house during public disorder-SI

What the police must prove:

To convict you of "firing at a dwelling house or building", the Police must prove, beyond reasonable doubt:

  1. That you fired a firearm at a dwelling-house or other building; and
  2. That it was done with reckless disregard for the safety of any person.

To successfully convict you, it is not necessary for the Police to prove that any person was actually placed in danger by the firing of the firearm.

Possible Defences

Possible defences to a "firing at dwelling house or building" charge include, but are not limited to:

Types of penalties:

Jail: This is the most serious penalty for the charge of demanding property with intent to steal and involves full time detention in a correctional facility. Read more.

Home Detention: Home detention is an alternative to full-time imprisonment. In effect the gaol sentence is served at your address rather than in a gaol. Read more.

Intensive correction order (ICO): This option has replaced periodic detention. The court can order you to comply with a number of conditions, such as attending counselling or treatment, not consuming alcohol, complying with a curfew and performing community service. Read more.

Periodic detention (commonly known as weekend detention): This form of imprisonment ceased to be a sentencing option in October 2010.

Suspended sentence: This is a jail sentence that is suspended upon you entering into a good behaviour bond. Provided the terms of the good behaviour bond are obeyed the jail sentence will not come into effect. A suspended sentence is only available for sentences of imprisonment of up to two years. Read more.

Community service order (CSO): This involves either unpaid work in the community at a place specified by probation and parole or attendance at a centre to undertake a course, such as anger management. In order to be eligible for a CSO you have to be assessed by an officer of the probation service as suitable to undertake the order. Read more.

Good behaviour bond: This is an order of the court that requires you to be of good behaviour for a specified period of time. The court will impose conditions that you will have to obey during the term of the good behaviour bond. The maximum duration of a good behaviour bond is five years. Read more.

Fines: When deciding the amount of a fine for a demanding property with intent to steal charge the magistrate or judge should consider your financial situation and your ability to pay any fine they set. Read more.

Section 10: avoiding a criminal record. Normally, when you plead guilty to a criminal offence, the court imposes a penalty and records a conviction. If the court records a conviction, you will have a criminal record. However, if we can convince the court not to convict you, there will be no penalty of any type and no criminal record. In all criminal cases, the court has the discretion not to convict you, but to give you a Section 10 dismissal instead. Read more.


where to next?

If you suspect that you may be under investigation, or if you have been charged with an offence, it is vital to get competent legal advice as early as possible. Our lawyers are highly specialised in criminal law and will be able to guide you through the process while dealing with the various authorities related to your matter.

Why Choose Armstrong Legal?

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