Section 47 of the Offenses against the Persons Act 1861: Assault and Actual Bodily Harm
In the given scenario, when Cooper went to sit down, Carter who did not like Cooper as he used to bully him at school, removed the chair and Cooper fell down. However, Cooper did not sustain any form of injuries.
Charge- Here, Carter may be charged under section 47 of the Offenses against the Persons Act 1861 for causing actual bodily harm to Cooper.
Definition of Actual Bodily harm- The offence has been described under section 47 of the Act according to which any assault done that causes an actual bodily harm is an offense. Although the statutory provision refers to assault only, the offense may also be committed by a battery that is, the commission of battery resulting in actual bodily harm shall be deemed to be a offense under the section. In fact, the offenses that are charged with section 47, are usually committed by battery rather than by an assault.
In order to establish an offense under section 47 of the Act, the victim must prove that such battery or assault must have caused actual bodily harm. In R v Miller  2 ALL ER 529, the court described actual bodily harm as any injury or hurt that is determined to interfere with the comfort or health of the victim. Further, bodily harm includes the cutting of hair as was held in DPP v Smith  EWHC 94 and it also includes any form of psychiatric injury as was held in R v Chan Fook  1 WLR 689.
Actus reus of Actual bodily harm- the commission of assault or battery causing actual bodily harm to the victim shall be the actus reus of the offense of actual bodily harm. In the given circumstances, the Actus Reus would be pulling of chair by Carter as it amounts to battery. This commission of battery has caused Cooper to fall on the ground.
Mens Rea- the intention of the defendant regarding the commission of such battery or assault shall be deemed as battery as was observed in R v Spratt  1 WLR 1073 and R v Venna  3 WLR 737. In the given scenario, Carter had the intention to cause harm or hurt Cooper, as Cooper used to bully him at school, thus, such intention establishes mens rea in this case.
Conclusion- under the above circumstances, the charge under section 47 of the Act is likely to be upheld and Carter may become entitled to be punished for causing actual bodily harm to Cooper with imprisonment for a maximum period of 5 years.
Definition Actual Bodily Harm and Actus Reus
Defense- Carter may contend that as stated in R v Miller that an actual bodily harm must cause any injury to the victim, in this case, Cooper did not sustain any form of injuries, therefore, he cannot be charged with the offense of actual bodily harm under section 47 of the Offenses against the Persons Act 1861.
In the given scenario, Barry while playing the football game unlawfully caused a cut on Joey’s leg requiring 3 stitches at the hospital.
Charge- Barry may be charged with the offense of grievous bodily harm stipulated under section 18 or section 20 of the Offense against Persons Act 1861 (OAPA). Further, Barry may also be charged for causing psychic or mental harm to Ryan’s father Paul under section 47 of the OAPA 1861.
Definition of grievous bodily harm- any person who causes any injury, wound or inflicts any form of grievous bodily harm to any other person with the intention to cause serious bodily harm with or without a weapon shall be considered to have committed such offense under section 18 or section 20 of the Act. In Wooldridge v Sumner  2 QB 43, it was held that the causing of grievous bodily harm with intention is deemed as one of the most serious of the no-fatal offenses against the victim. In order to establish the offense, it must be proved that the defendant has intentionally caused such serious injury to the victim. A person shall be said to have committed such offense even if such person foresees that no matter how minor, but some form of physical harm shall be caused to the victim.
The term ‘wound’ has been defined in the case of C (a minor) v Eisenhower  QB331 and Moriarty v Brookes  EWHC Exch J79, as some form of a break in the continuity of skin. The offense of grievously bodily harm caused with intention is triable only on indictment and the offender shall be punished with maximum sentence life imprisonment. In case, the offense is tried before the Crown Court, the offender shall be sentenced for a period of six months and shall be liable to pay not exceeding the maximum amount stated by the statutes.
Definition of psychic harm- any form of bodily harm shall be deemed as psychiatric injury or harm under section 47 of OAPA 1861 as was stated in R v Ireland  3 WLR 689 and in R v Burstow  UKHL 34 where repeated phone calls made to the victim caused psychiatric injury to the victim.
Mens Rea and Conclusion
Actus Reus of grievous bodily injury- when a person inflicts serious injuries or wound on another person with weapon or without weapon, it forms the Actus Reus of the offense. In this case, the Barry tackled Joey in a way that caused him a serious injury on his legs that required three stitches. Further, Barry intimidated Paul, that if he would also sustain injuries and require stitches, if he goes near Barry. It amounts to Actus Reus in the given case.
Mens rea- the causing of grievous bodily harm with intent to cause serious bodily injury under section 18 or 20 of the Act, to a person establishes the mens rea of the offender. In case of any psychiatric, harm caused under section 47 of the Act, the intention to cause fear to give rise to psychiatric harm shall be considered as mens rea of the offender. In this case, Barry intentionally causes grievous injury to Joey and intimidates Paul causing fear in his mind, thus, establishing mens rea.
Conclusion- the charge of committing grievous bodily harm and psychiatric injury is likely to be upheld as per the given facts of the case and Barry shall be punished with either life imprisonment or imprisonment for a period of 6 months and/or with fine.
Defense- In his defense, Barry may state that he did not cause such serious injury and psychiatric injury with intention.
In this case, Barry was well aware that Rebecca was his identical brother’s girlfriend who was not at home and Rebecca was upstairs. Although Barry decided to inform Rebecca that it was he and not his brother, when Rebecca mistook Barry for his brother and invited him to bed, Barry did not reveal himself and had sexual intercourse with her.
Charge- Barry may be charged under section 1 of the Sexual offences Act 2003 for committing the offence of rape.
Definition of Rape- According to the statutory law in United Kingdom, a person is said to have committed rape if he is involved in any type of non-consensual penetration. Section 1 of the Sexual offences Act 2003 defines the offense as any person who deliberately penetrates vagina mouth or anus of another person with his penis with or without the consent of the victim or under a reasonably belief of consent. The reasonability of such belief must be considered after considering the circumstances including any steps that the offender has taken to make certain whether the victim has consented to such sexual intercourse. In R v Bree  ALL ER (d) 412, the victim was capable of giving consent to have the sexual intercourse or not.
However, committing rape by deception is a crime where the perpetrator obtains the compliance and agreement of the victim by means of fraudulent or deceptive actions or statements as was stated in R v Linekar  3 ALL ER 69 73. In R v Assange  EWHC 2849, deceit negated the consent of the victim and the offense of rape was established. Any person who shall be held liable for committing the offense of rape shall be punished with life imprisonment on indictment or conviction.
Actus Reus of rape- when the perpetrator penetrates his penis into the vagina, anus or mouth of the victim, the Actus Reus of the offence is established.
Mens Rea of rape- the person committing such offense with the intention to commit it, it establishes the Mens Rea of the perpetrator. In this case, Barr committed the offense with the intention of causing the offense thus establishing his Mens Rea.
Conclusion- under the given circumstances, the charge is likely to be upheld as he was aware that the victim was at home and despite mistaken identity, took an advantage of Rebecca. Barry shall be punished with life imprisonment.
Defense- Barry, in his defense, may state that he did not have the intention to commit rape and Rebecca had consented to such intercourse.
In this case, Jim decided to ask Katie to move in with him at the top of the bridge. When they arrived at the bridge, they saw the notice indicating that the bridge was damaged and there was no fencing blocking the entry on to the bridge. Still the couple decided to walk across the bridge and the bridge collapsed resulting in the death of Jim.
Charge- the death of Jim shall be deemed as the offense of homicide.
Definition of homicide- Manslaughter and murder are the two offences that constitutes homicide. Manslaughter is said to be committed when a person kills with the intention to murder a person; conducts on a way that was grossly negligent given the risk of death and the person is killed and is known as gross negligent manslaughter. It also includes unlawful act involving danger of harm resulting in death, which is known as unlawful manslaughter. As per the facts of the case, it amounts to gross negligence manslaughter involving duty of care, breach of care, causation of breach and gross negligence.
However, in R v Adomako  HL and R v Misra  it was held that where the defendant was least concerned and disregard for his safety and life, the defendant, gross negligence manslaughter cannot be established. Other relevant cases establishing the fact are R v Jordan  40, R v Cheshire  1 WLR 844 and R v Pagett  76 Cr app R 279.
R v Barry: Grievous Bodily Harm and Psychic Harm
Actus Reus- a conduct that was grossly negligent that has caused death is established as actus Reus.
Mens rea- a conduct that is grossly negligent and is likely to cause death like the broken bridge that was likely to cause death if it was used.
Conclusion- Under these circumstances, the charge is not likely to be upheld on the ground of novus actus interveniens. The fact that Jim and Katie disregarded the notice indicating the damaged bridge and went to the bridge may be deemed as an act or even that broke the causal connection between the crime and wrong committed by the defendant and therefore, such act relieves the defendant.
In this case, Jake punched in the face of the victim and he sustained injuries.
Charge- Jake may be charged with the offense of Actual bodily harm (ABH) under section 47 of the OAPA 1861.
Definition of ABH- any assault done that causes an actual bodily harm is an offense. the victim must prove that such battery or assault must have caused actual bodily harm as was held in R v Miller’s case.
Actus Reas- Jake punched in Carson’s face, which amounts to an assault causing actual bodily harm.
Mens Rea- Intention of the offender amounts to mens rea. Jake intentionally punched Carson, as Carson was jealous of him and pinned him against the tree.
Conclusion- the charge is likely to be upheld as Jake did cause ABH to Carson, which caused him bodily discomfort, and such bodily discomfort signifies ABH.
In this case, while hitting Jake with the branch of tree, Carson hit Bella with the branch and fractured her skull.
Charge- Carson may be charged with the offense of grievous bodily harm stipulated under section 18 or section 20 of the Offense against Persons Act 1861 (OAPA).
Actus Reus- As discussed above, the offender must cause serious injuries and here, Carson hit the victim with a tree branch.
Mens Rea- Carson intended to hit Jake with branch but did not foresee that it would hit Bella and therefore he did not intend to hit the victim.
Conclusion- Charge is not likely to be upheld as the rule of thin skull shall be applicable, according to which the unexpected frailty of the injured person is not a valid defense as was held in R v Blaue  61 Cr App R 271 and R v Latimer  17 QBD 539. Moreover, Carson did not have the mens Rea or criminal intention to kill Bella that is necessary to establish GBH under s. 18 of the act. However, he shall be liable to pay compensation for the loss suffered by Bella.
Definition of Grievous Bodily Harm and Psychic Harm
Charge- Jake may be charged with the offense of homicide under the OAPA 1861.
Actus Reus- as per the facts of case, it gives rise to involuntary manslaughter where the offender involves in an unlawful act that is likely to cause harm resulting in death. Jake cuts the brake of Carson sister’s car, which amounts to an unlawful act likely to cause death.
Mens Rea- Jake intended to commit murder, as he wanted to seek revenge against Carson by cutting off the brakes of her car.
Conclusion- The charge is likely to be upheld as Jake has intended to kill Cason’s sister to seek revenge against Carson for causing serious injuries to his girlfriend Bella.
Defense- Jake may use the ground of diminished responsibility in his defense by stating that he was under an unbalanced mental state when he committed the offense.
In this case, Ryan hit Jessi with lampshade with a heavy stone as she cheated on him being and blamed him to be a lousy husband.
Charged- Ryan may be charged with the offense of GBH under section 18 or 20 of the OAPA Act.
Actus Reus- Ryan caused serious injury to Jessi and hit her with a lampshade with a heavy stone establishing Actus Reus.
Mens Rea- Ryan did not have the intention to kill Jessi but to cause grievous bodily harm to her. Therefore, this intention establishes mens rea in this case.
Conclusion- the thin skull rule shall be applied in this case, as Jake was not aware that Jessi had a delicate skull and that it would break if hit. He caused serious bodily injury to Jessi, the charge shall be upheld, and as stated in R v Blaue’s case, he cannot use the unexpected frailty of the injured person as a valid defense and shall be liable to compensate for the loss.
In this case, Boo gambled Tay and Tucky’s money to pay for the satellite television bill and then shouts, pushes a woman, and grabs her purse from her hand.
Charge- Boo may be charged with the offense of theft stipulated under section 1(1) of the Theft Act 1968.
Definition- Theft maybe defined as a dishonest appropriation of property that belongs to another with an intention to deprive the other person of such property irrespective of the fact that such conduct is made to gain or for the advantage of the thief itself as defined under section 1(1) of the Act. In R v Moris  3 WLR 697 and DPP v Gomez  AC 442, it was observed that appropriation includes assumption of the rights of the owner. Further, ‘property’ includes money and all other property, be it real or personal, and other things in action and intangible property.
Actus Reus and Mens Rea
Actus Reus- Boo has dishonestly appropriated the property that belonged to that woman.
Mens Rea- Boo had dishonest intention to deprive the woman of her money in the purse, permanently.
Conclusion- the charge against Boo shall be upheld as she intended to dishonestly appropriate the money from the woman and deprive her of it permanently.
In this case, Alex tells Piper that she wants her to burn down storage facilities for Alex. On refusing, Alex threatens Piper that if job is not done her boyfriend shall be kneecapped and rolled into a river.
Charge- Alex may be charged under section 21 of the Theft Act 1968 for committing blackmail.
Definition- section 21 states that a person is guilty of blackmail if such person makes and unwarranted demand with menaces with a view to gain for himself or any other person or with the intention to cause loss to another person. A demand with menace is unwarranted unless the person making such demand believes he has reasonable grounds for making the demand and that the use of such menaces is an appropriate means to emphasize the demand as was observed in R v Harrey  72 Cr App R 139 and in R v Tomlinson  1 QB 706.
Actus Reus- Alex demanded to burn down the storage facility for her own good as well as Cubra. Such demand was unwarranted with menace as she threatened Philip that she would roll her boyfriend into the river.
Mens Rea- She made the demand with a view to gain herself and blackmailed Piper with intention to cause loss to her by way of hurting her boyfriend. She believed that use of such menaces is an appropriate means to emphasize the demand.
Conclusion- the charge is likely to be upheld and Alex shall be punished with imprisonment for the period of 14 years.
In this case, Tay decides to teach Joe a lesson for not thanking Vee for arranging a television at a discounted price. She breaks the lock of the Joe’s greenhouse, trashes the contents of the greenhouse, and fires a single rubber bullet through Joe’s window. The window smashed but did not cause harm to Joe.
Charge- Tay may be charged under section 1 (1) (2) of the Criminal Damage Act 1971 for destroying or damaging property.
Definition- Any person who destroys or damages any property that belongs to another person with the intention to damage or destroy such property or being reckless with respect to fact that such property would be damaged or destroyed shall be guilty of committing such offence. According to section 2 of the Act, if any person intends to destruct to endanger the life of another person being reckless about the fact whether the life of another person is being endangered shall be punished with life imprisonment.
Conclusion and Defense
Actus Reus- Tay destroyed all the contents including the plants and ornaments of Joe’s Greenhouse, thus, establishing damage of the property of another person. She fired a single rubber bullet through Joe’s bedroom window and trashed the window glass being reckless whether it would endanger the life of another person.
Mens Rea- Tay destroyed or damaged the property of Joe with the intention to do so and fire a single rubber bullet being reckless about endangering Joe’s life.
Conclusion- The charge is likely to be upheld as Tay is guilty of committing offense under section 1 and 2 of the Criminal Damage Act 1971 and shall be punished with life imprisonment.
In this case, Joe believed that Healy caused damage to his greenhouse and enters into Healy’s house and hit him multiple times with a shovel. Healy sustains three broken ribs and a ruptured spleen.
Charge- Joe may be charged under section 9 and 10 of the Act for committing the offense of burglary and aggravated burglary.
Definition of burglary- a person is said to have committed burglary if such person has entered into a building as a trespasser with the intention to commit any form of offense or such person has trespassed any building to steal or inflict any grievous bodily harm as stipulated under section 9(1) (a) and (b) of the Act. Such person shall be punished with imprisonment for a period of 14 years.
Aggravated burglary- a person commits aggravated burglary if while committing such offence carries with him any weapon of offense that is used to cause injury or incapacitating any person as stipulated under section 10 of the Act and such person shall be punished with life imprisonment on indictment.
Actus Reus- Joe trespassed into Healy’s house and hit him multiple times with a shovel causing him severe injuries.
Mens Rea- Joe trespassed into Healy’s house with the intention to cause him injury as he believed that Healy has destroyed his greenhouse.
Conclusion- the charge is likely to be upheld as Joe committed burglary under section 9 of the Act as he trespassed into the building to inflict grievous bodily harm on Healy. Further while trespassing into the building, Joe carried a shovel which signifies an open weapon in order to cause serious bodily injury to Healy. Joe shall be be punished either with life imprisonment or an imprisonment for 14 years.
In this case, Alex sleepwalks and draws random shapes on Piper’s carpet with her red lipstick and to remove the lipstick stains Piper has to spend a lot of money.
R v Barry: Rape by Deception
Charge- Alex may be charged with section 1(1) of the Criminal Damages Act 1971 for damaging the property of another person.
As explained above, any person who causes damages to any other person’s property without any lawful; excuse and with the intention to cause such damage, shall be said to have committed the offence under the Act and is imprisoned for a period of 14 years.
Actus Reus- in this case, Alex caused damage to Piper’s cream carpet by drawing shapes with her red lipstick.
Mens rea- Alex was sleepwalking and had no intention to cause any damage to Piper’s property. Hence, there is an absence of mens rea under such circumstances.
Conclusion- the charge under section 1(1) of the Act is not likely to be upheld as in order to make the defendant liable under the section it is important that the defendant had intentionally caused such damage to the property and without any lawful excuse. As per the facts, since Alex was sleepwalking she was not in her senses and it is a lawful excuse, as she did not have any intention to cause such damage to the property of Piper.
Defense- Alex may state that she did not have any intention to cause such damage and since she made shapes on the carpet as she was sleepwalking which is a lawful excuse.
In this case, Tucky took her nephew Bennett to the park and could not buy him an ice cream, as she did not have money. She picks pockets from the trouser of a woman and buys ice cream only to find money in her jacket pocket. She spots the woman and attempts to put the note back into her pocket when the woman catches her and screams ‘thief. She ran into piper’s house, breaks his window glass to get in.
Charge- Tucky may be charged with the offence of theft under section 1(1) of the Theft act 1968 and with the offense of causing damage without any lawful excuse to another person’s property under s. (1) of Criminal Damage Act.
As mentioned earlier a person commits theft if he dishonestly appropriates property of another person with the intention to deprive the person of his property permanently as was held in Lawrence v MPC  AC 626.
Actus Reus- Tucky appropriated £10 note from the trouser of a woman dishonestly to buy her nephew an ice cream.
Mens Rea- Tucky had the intention to appropriate the £10 note from the woman dishonestly and to deprive her of her money permanently.
Definition of Rape and Actus Reus
Conclusion- The charge of theft and causing damage to the property of another person are likely to be upheld as the offence of theft committed by Tucky include all the essential elements of theft that is dishonest appropriation of property belonging to the woman to deprive her permanently of the money. The fact that she attempted to return it back does not act as any valid defense.
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