ACT Criminal Law
National Criminal Law
NSW Criminal Law
QLD Criminal Law
VIC Criminal Law
WA Criminal Law
My legal matter concerning an application for a Domestic Violence Order was managed by Mr Thomas Allen. I am grateful for the outcome he obtained. Without Mr Allen and his ongoing support, I would be certain of a different result. It has been an extremely stressful period. Mr Allen’s astute ability to liaise on my behalf and his expertise was invaluable and for which I am grateful as I am now able to move forward. Thanking you
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Armstrong Legal and specifically Mr Thomas Allen for representing me in my recent case. At the outset, I would like to thank Mr Allen for the very professional delivery of his legal service. From the first time that I met Mr Allen, I was very impressed with his demeanour and delivery as he made me feel at ease knowing the severity of my case. Mr Allen not only gave me the possible positive outcomes of the case but also the realisation of the worst-case scenario as far as sentencing goes. … I will certainly be recommending Armstrong Legal to any of my friends or family needing representation in criminal matters. Thank you so very much.
Thank you for your representation and help. Fingers crossed for the next step and parole. I just want to say that from the first phone call to your office, your service has been outstanding and have put my mind at ease. I am glad I picked your number to ring.
Thank you Armstrong Legal, the lawyers that have helped over the past 3 years but more importantly, thank you to Thomas Allen for the major part you and Mr Buckland played. Cannot thank you enough. Cheers.
Hi all. I would like to thank Ms Lisa Riley for all her help with my legal issues this past month. It was the most harrowing experience of my life and thanks to her expertise, professionalism and knowledge of the law, I came out almost unscathed. I have no hesitation in recommending Lisa Riley and Armstrong Legal if you need help. The service is amazing and the cost was very minimal for the great outcome. Thank you Lisa for helping me in the most difficult time.
I just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. My whole life I was thrown away, you made me feel like I did mean something. I could not have asked for a better lawyer. Your compassion and love for your job is inspiring. Your upfront and honesty were muchly appreciated, you are a beautiful person. Thank you for not giving up on me and thank you for all the work you put in. I wish you all the best for the future and I will be recommending you to everyone I know. You're amazing!!!!
I just wanted to thank you for representing me on Monday, I was overjoyed & relieved with the outcome. I don’t think it could have gone any better. All the best, I hope you got to celebrate this one instead after work, you forever made a difference in my life.
I know I thanked you before we parted company but please allow me to reiterate in writing my sincere deepest thanks for defending me in court today. … Armstrong Legal certainly has a great Lawyer you are a credit to the company and I'm quite sure you will secure a very successful future! … My Kindest Regards and Thanks
Throughout Angela has been the consummate professional. She maintained a calm, yet strong demeanour remained informative and completely open in her communication and took complete ownership of the situation. We felt confident we finally had an advocate to steer us out of the nightmare we were in, and she did so with great respect and sincerity. I cannot speak more highly of Angela. She has literally rescued our family from what looked very much like a hopeless future.
Words can’t describe how grateful I am to Trudie Cameron being my solicitor and to Andrew Tiedt presenting my case in the court. They both have been very supportive and amazingly professional and effective. I’ve got an absolutely fantastic outcome I couldn’t even dream about.
Soon after meeting Andrew I knew he was the solicitor I wanted to handle my matter. He immediately sprang into action which brought me stability and hope during a tumultuous time in my life. Andrew was never afraid to give me straight answers to my tough questions which is a true mark of integrity. He is clearly at ease in the court environment and I believe his calm and measured demeanour went a long way to helping me secure the best result from my day in court. I would certainly recommend you approach Andrew if you need assistance.
"Andrew Tiedt was very professional and considerate to personal circumstances and gave sound advice that resulted in the best outcome possible. Highly recommended."
Alcohol-Fueled Assaults (Qld)
The offence of unlawful striking causing death, otherwise known as the ‘one punch law’ was introduced by the Queensland Parliament in 2014 in response to an increase in alcohol-fueled assaults resulting in death. The Criminal Code 1899 was amended to add section 314A making out the offence of unlawful striking causing death. Amendments were also made to the Bail Act and Penalties and Sentences Act 1992 to address alcohol and drug-fuelled assaults. This article outlines the changes.
Alcohol-fueled assaults: unlawful striking causing death
Section 314A provides that a person is guilty of a crime if they:
- Unlawfully strike another person to the head or neck; and
- Cause the death of the other person.
Under this law, offenders are considered to have caused the death of the other person regardless of whether they intended the victim to die or foresaw death as a possible consequence of striking the blow. This means that there is no fault element required (eg intent) in relation to the victim’s death.
In Queensland, the offence of unlawful striking causing death carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment and prescribes a mandatory minimum sentencing regime, under which the court must order that an offender serves 80% of any term of imprisonment imposed or, 15 years (whichever is less).
Other amendments addressing alcohol-fueled assaults
A number of other amendments have also been made to Queensland legislation dealing with alcohol-fueled assaults.
Assaults on public officers
The Criminal Code has been altered to include harsher penalties for assaults on public officers which involve spitting, biting or application of bodily fluid or faeces, causing bodily harm.
Serious offences in public places
A further amendment was the insertion of Chapter 35A to deal with serious offences of violence committed in a public place whilst the accused was adversely affected by alcohol. Under the new chapter, a person is to be taken to be adversely affected by an intoxicating substance at the time of offending if they have recorded a BAC of more than .15 or tested positive for any drug, unless they can prove they were not intoxicated at the time of the offending.
Sentences for alcohol-fueled assaults
The Penalties and Sentences Act 1992 was also amended so that when a court is dealing with persons who have committed serious assault-fueled assaults it must:
- impose a community service order in addition to any other sentence;
- ensure that voluntary intoxication cannot be relied upon at sentence to mitigate a sentence.
The court may also ban the offender from in and around licenced premises for any period of time including lifetime bans if the court deems that appropriate.
The Police Powers and Responsibilities Act 2000 has been amended to ensure that police are empowered to conduct drug and alcohol testing to establish whether a person charged with the relevant offence was adversely affected by intoxicating substance for the purposes of triggering the mandatory community service order provision.
The Bail Act 1980 was also amended to create a mandatory condition of bail for offenders charged with prescribed offences of violence. The condition requires that these offenders participate in a drug and alcohol assessment referral programme.
Detention of intoxicated people
Safe Night Precinct Support Services were introduced in the Brisbane CBD, to be used for the temporary detention and care of intoxicated persons. Police can detain people who are intoxicated and behaving in a way that poses a risk of harm to themselves or other people for up to eight hours. A qualified medical professional would also be present at the centre to ensure the wellbeing of the person detained. An example of a safe night precinct support service organisation is ‘NightWatch Chaplaincy’.
Why was the one-punch law needed?
Prior to the introduction of section 314A, it was difficult for a court to convict a person of murder or manslaughter if the person caused the victim’s death by a single punch. This was due to the evidential threshold of both offences. To find a person guilty of murder in Queensland, there must be an intent to kill. In the absence of overt evidence that the offender intended to kill the victim, a conviction of murder is difficult to secure. To find a person guilty of manslaughter, the accused must have foreseen that the victim’s death could result from their actions.
In many cases, unlawful striking causing death has been considered as an alternative offence because it does away with the need for intent or foreseeability. That does not mean that the offence is less serious than manslaughter, bearing in mind the mandatory sentencing provision attached to the offence.
In many cases, courts found that an intent to kill cannot be derived from one punch, and neither could death be said to have been foreseeable in these situations. This meant that the charge against offenders in these situations of alcohol-fueled assaults was likely to be downgraded to a simple assault. The creation of the offence on unlawful striking causing death met the community’s expectations regarding violence within our society following assaults where young people lost their lives whilst enjoying a night out in the city.
According to the Queensland Sentencing Information Service statistics, as at November 2020, six cases of unlawful striking causing death have been heard and each case has resulted in imprisonment. The range of terms of imprisonment imposed has been between five and nine years and all offenders have served 80% of the sentence before becoming eligible for parole.
If you require legal advice or representation in any legal matter please contact Armstrong Legal.
Under section 349 of the Criminal Code 1899, the offence of rape carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment. As…
In Queensland, there are a number of offences that a person can be charged with that involve the wilful destruction…
The offence of deprivation of liberty is contained in section 355 of the Criminal Code 1899. It is a misdemeanour…
201 Elizabeth Street
Sydney NSW 2000
575 Bourke Street
Melbourne VIC 3000
91 North Quay
Brisbane QLD 4000
Nishi, 2 Phillip Law Street
Canberra ACT 2601
22 St Georges Terrace Perth