Do You Want Your Assault Charges Withdrawn?

My legal team uses a proven forensic analysis of the Crown's evidence against you. This can lead to getting your assault charges being withdrawn.

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Do You Want to Avoid an Assault Charge?
My name is Dan Joffe, Criminal Lawyer. My team uses a proven forensic analysis of the Crown’s evidence against you. This can lead to getting your charges withdrawn.

My name is Dan Joffe.  I am a criminal lawyer in Ontario. My team uses forensic analysis to determine whether your Charter rights were violated.  If you have been criminally charged, let’s chat and I’ll give you (secure, anonymous and free) info that can change everything.

Do You Want to Avoid an Assault Charge?

My name is Dan Joffe.  I am a criminal lawyer in Ontario. My team uses forensic analysis to determine whether your Charter rights were violated.  If you have been charged with assault, Let’s chat and I’ll give you (secure, anonymous and free) info that can change everything.

My Only Job is to Help You
Below is our Criminal Assault general information guide.
(But we can explain much clearer by getting in touch with us directly by clicking below)


Getting charged by the police is stressful

I think you’ll agree with me that getting a criminal charge by the police for an assault charge is stressful.

And, It’s confusing

What makes it worse, there’s so much information online.  It’s hard to find real answers.

A criminal conviction can destroy your ability to work.

The penalties for assault are severe.  Even a first-time conviction can be life-changing.

The maximum prison sentences are high

There’s a serious risk of imprisonment if convicted of assault in Ontario. Jailt sentences can run a maximum of 10 years, depending on the type of assault.

Bottom line?

Assault criminal penalties can destroy your life.  But, it doesn’t need to be that way.

How to fight this charge

In this post, I’m going to give the information you need to understand this charge. Knowledge is power.  Being informed puts you in a better position to fight this charge in order to get the best outcome possible.

Just a quick note before you dive into this post.

Yes, I’m providing really valuable information here.  If I were charged with assault in Ontario, this is the information that I would want to know.  But to be clear, I am NOT giving you legal advice. Everyone’s case is different. If you want to speak with a lawyer about your case, give me (or any lawyer) a call.  The call is free.



What is Assault in Ontario under the Criminal Code?
The more important question is “What has to be proved for a conviction of assault?”

To prove that a person is guilty of assault, the Crown prosecutor (the lawyer representing the government) must prove beyond a reasonable doubt the following elements of assault:

  • Force was applied: The complainant had a legitimate, reasonable belief that the person was trying to harm them. Generally, words themselves do not constitute assault until the harm is manifested either physically or can be definitively perceived by the complainant. However, threatening words can result in being charged with the criminal offence of uttering threats.
  • The complainant did not consent.
  • The accused applied force on purpose: The assaulter intended to harm or create a state of fear in the complainant, and that the event did not occur by accident.



What are the types of assault under the criminal code in Ontario?

Simple Assault

This is the most basic type of assault charge in Canada, and, at this level, can be prosecuted in two ways. If someone is charged with simple assault as a summary conviction, this is the less severe of the two charges, and can actually be processed directly by a judge with no need for a jury or a jail sentence. However, in more severe cases of simple assault, it can be treated as an indictable offense, which will require a more formal court process.

Assault Causing Bodily Harm

When notable injuries occur, a charge can be stepped up to causing bodily harm. It can still be prosecuted two ways, with a summary conviction and a maximum penalty of 18 months in jail, or, if it is prosecuted as an indictable offense, up to 10 years in prison.

Assault with a Weapon

Assault with a weapon is exactly what it sounds like. This is an act of violence or a threat of violence in which a weapon is used, such as a gun, knife, or other implement. Like the bodily harm charge, this can also be prosecuted as either a summary conviction or indictable offense with similar maximum jail sentences.

Sexual Assault

When non-consensual sex is also involved with a threat or act of violence, it becomes sexual assault. Like assault, this has both summary conviction and indictable offense variations, with 18 month and 10 year maximum sentences based on the charge.

Sexual Assault with a Weapon/Threats/Bodily Harm

More severe versions of sexual assault, these are charged in a similar fashion depending on circumstances. There are both summary conviction and indictable offense sentences. Maximum punishments range from 18 months to 10 years of jail time.

Sexual Assault with a Weapon/Threats/Bodily Harm

More severe versions of sexual assault, these are charged in a similar fashion depending on circumstances. There are both summary conviction and indictable offense sentences. Maximum punishments range from 18 months to 10 years of jail time.

Aggravated Sexual Assault

As with aggravated assault, this means that there were far more serious consequences and/or injuries for the victim, and is always tried as an indictable offense. Should a weapon be involved, such as a gun, the minimum jail sentence in the event of conviction is four years.

Assaulting a Police Officer

When acts of violence occur to a police officer, this has its own charge, but is prosecuted in a similar manner to other charges. Depending on circumstances, a police officer assault charge can be a summary conviction, or it can be an indictable offense. It depends on the act. All assault charges have varying levels of severity, from simple to aggravated. Most of them can also be prosecuted as either the less severe summary conviction or, the more serious indictable offense. The one thing that doesn’t change with any of these charges is that once you’re convicted, you have an entry on your criminal record.



Penalties if you are convicted in court

For simple assault, the maximum penalty you can receive is 6 months in jail and/or $5,000 fine for a summary conviction, and 5 years in jail if the Crown Attorney proceeds by indictment.

For assault with a weapon or assault causing bodily harm, the maximum penalty is 18 months in jail for a summary conviction and 10 years in jail if the Crown Attorney proceeds by indictment.

For aggravated assault, the maximum penalty is 14 years in jail.

Upon conviction for sexual assault, a person faces a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment for an indictable offence, and a maximum penalty of 18 months imprisonment for a summary offence.

Where a person has been convicted of sexual assault with a weapon, threats to a third party or causing bodily harm, and a restricted or prohibited firearm is used or where the offence was committed for the benefit of, at the direction of, or in association with a criminal organization, that person is liable to a maximum penalty of 14 years imprisonment. Where the offence is committed under any of the circumstances listed above, there is a minimum penalty of 5 years imprisonment for a first offence, and a minimum of 7 years imprisonment for a second and any subsequent offence. In any other circumstance where a firearm is used in the commission of the offence, upon conviction a person is liable to a minimum penalty of 4 years imprisonment and a maximum of 14 years imprisonment. In any other case where there is no firearm used in the commission of the offence, a person is liable to a maximum of 14 years imprisonment.

With respect to aggravated sexual assault, the only differences in penalty to that of sexual assault with a weapon are that aggravated sexual assault carries with a maximum penalty of life imprisonment in any other case where a firearm was used in the commission of the offence, and a maximum penalty of life imprisonment where no firearm was used.



Who Is Involved in Your Legal Process

To get the best outcome for your Stunt Driving, it’s important to know how our legal system works and who the people are that will be involved in your case.

Our legal system works like a “boxing match” or “MMA fight”.

Our court system is designed to have two people fighting it out with a referee there to make sure each side is following the rules.

There are 3 important people that matter in your legal process.
  1. Important Person #1: You – You have been charged.  You are known as the “Defendant”.  You can either defend yourself or have a lawyer defend you.
  2. Important Person #2: The Prosecutor – He or she represents the province of Ontario. If your case goes to trial, then the Police Officer will be asked to attend your trial to provide the evidence.
  3. Important Person #3: The Judge – He or she is the “referee”.
These 3 important people each have an important role in your legal process.

Your Role – You have been charged with Stunt Driving.

  • Your job is to defend yourself against the charge.  If you hire a lawyer, your lawyer’s job will be to defend you.

The Prosecutor’s Role – His or her job is to convict you of Impaired Driving.

  • The Prosecutor is NOT your friend.  Yes, they may be nice.  They may be pleasant to deal with.  But, their job is NOT to be your friend.
  • The Prosecutor needs to decide whether it makes sense to move ahead with your Stunt Driving charge given the facts of the case.
  • If the Prosecutor proceeds with the case against you, the Prosecutor needs to prove that you, in fact, drove over the legal limit of blood alcohol.

The Judge’s Role – He or she is the “referee” in your fight.

  • In criminal court, your case will be overseen by a Judge.
  • The Judge is NOT advocating for you.  Nor are they advocating for the Prosecutor.  The Judge is like a referee. They are there to make sure all the rules are being followed.



How do I Get Assault charges Withdrawn? (Even if You’re Guilty)

One of the most important questions we get at our law firm is whether someone can get their charges withdrawn or dismissed.

And the answer is, “maybe.”

It may be possible, but it is always dependent upon specific facts of your case.

And in almost every case, getting your charges dismissed relies on a document called the “Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.”

You may have heard about this “Charter” in the news, social media, or TV. And because the Charter is so important, it’s worth understanding how the Charter may be used by your lawyer to get your charges withdrawn.

What Is The “Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms”?

The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms sets out those rights and freedoms that Canadians believe are necessary for a free and democratic society. The Charter is one part of the Canadian Constitution. And, the Constitution is a set of laws containing the basic rules about how our country operates.

Why Is The Charter So Important?

The Charter is important because it protects basic rights and freedoms essential to keeping Canada a free and democratic society.

In the context of a criminal charge, this is incredibly important because the Charter ensures that the government, or anyone acting on its behalf, doesn’t take away or interfere with your rights or freedoms unreasonably.

And these aren’t just words. These words have real power and real meaning.

The Charter is effectively a rule book. Everyone acting on behalf of the government (including the police and the crown) must follow these rules.

And these rules are NOT optional. If these rules are not followed in the context of your criminal charge, then your charges may get withdrawn.

Now the Charter has 34 sections. Not every section has applicability to a criminal charge. But many have been interpreted by courts since the early 1980s when the Charter was added to the Constitution.

There have been thousands of cases that have gone to court to interpret the meaning of the Charter. And these court rulings effectively flesh out in more detail, the RULES that the police and the crown must follow on how they must conduct their case against you.

In theory, that sounds easy. A court makes a ruling, and the police and crowns read those cases – which are effectively the rules on how they have to do their job.

But we are all human, and we all make mistakes, including the police and the crowns. But when they make a mistake, that mistake, if it breaches your charter right, may result in a case getting thrown out and withdrawn.

And if that happens, you walk away as if nothing happened.



Example #1 – How the right to the presumption of innocence may get your charges withdrawn

Every Canadian has the right to the “presumption of innocence.”

This right is guaranteed in the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

According to Section 11(d) of the Charter: – “Any person charged with an offence has the right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty according to the law in a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal.

Let’s look into your right to be presumed innocent in the context of talking to the police.

Many people make the mistake that they believe that they can “talk their way out of it by speaking to police when arrested.” Even more common, many people believe that if they refuse to answer a police officer’s questions, it makes them look guilty.

The most important thing to understand is that it is NOT up to the accused to prove they are innocent. The onus is on the government to prove that the accused is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

While I can speak at great length about all the nuances of what this means, it is best to look at it this way.

When police arrest you, they believe you have committed a crime.

When asking questions, while the police may appear to have your best interests in mind, they don’t. The police are looking for evidence to help reinforce their belief that you are guilty.

The police may act friendly and polite, and while that may be sincere, they are also trying to gain your trust to get you to talk. In most cases, there is nothing to be gained speaking to police at the time of your arrest.

You should never waive your right to speak to a lawyer because you believe it makes you look “guilty” if you don’t answer questions. Only on the rarest of occasions, for reasons of giving an alibi, would you want to speak to the police. But it would be best if you only did so after speaking with a lawyer that you trust.

Bottom line.

In our justice system, the trier of fact (a Judge or Jury) is never allowed to make any inferences from you exercising your right to silence.

If the trier of fact does make an inference or conclusion about exercising your right to remain silent, then the charges against you may get withdrawn.



Example #2: How the evidence against you can be used to get your charges withdrawn

Every Canadian has a right to be secure against an unreasonable search or seizure. This right is covered in Section 8 of the Charter. And this rule must be followed by the police when they arrest you.

Here is the rule that the police must follow. The rule says the police cannot just search or seize your property unless they have what’s called “reasonable and probable grounds” that you either committed a crime or were in the process of committing a crime.

And, a mere “suspicion” is NOT enough to justify a search or seizure. If you are not under arrest and the police search your property and find something incriminating against you, they cannot use that evidence, and the charge may get withdrawn.

Let me give you an example of a client that we had where we used this charter right to get the charges withdrawn.v

Let’s call this client Jon Doe.

Now, Jon Doe was in the park, and a police officer thought he saw Jon do something suspicious. From the evidence we were given, it was clear that the police officer has a suspicion that Jon completed a drug transaction. Jon was carrying a backpack, and the officer demanded that Jon open the backpack, and the officer found drugs. And our client was charged with possession.

Now, here is where the Charter comes into play. And here is where the officer did not follow the Charter rules and made a mistake.

The officer cannot approach Jon and ask to see what was in his backpack. The officer would need to have reasonable and probable grounds to believe that Jon either committed a crime or was in the process of committing a crime.

In this case, the officer has a suspicion – a gut feeling – that something illegal happened. But, a gut feeling, or suspicion, does not meet the threshold where the officer can search your property.

In this case, the fact that drugs were found, that evidence is not admissible b/c it violated Jon’s charter right protection from an unreasonable search or seizure. And the charges were withdrawn



Example #3: How the circumstances of your arrest may get your charges withdrawn

Under Section 9 of the Charter, you have a “right not to be arbitrarily detained or imprisoned.”

When I look at evidence of charges against my clients and see a Section 9 issue, clients are often surprised because when you think about “detained” or “imprisoned,” most people think about actually being jailed.

But that doesn’t need to be the case.

The act of merely stopping someone on the street, without proper reason, may breach your right to not being arbitrarily detained or imprisoned. So you can be improperly detained, even on the street.

Let me give you an example.

If you are walking down a street, and a police officer asks you to stop because they want to investigate something, unless he informs you that you are either a) under arrest, or b) he is investigating you for a crime — you are not compelled to stop.

If the police officer ordered you to stop without proper reason – that order to stop is, in fact, you being arbitrarily detained on the open street. Any evidence the police find after stopping you (e.g. so if they find drugs, a weapon, or stolen goods, etc.) that evidence cannot be used against you in court.

Now, the threshold for investigative detention is lower than arrest. However, the police officer still must have reasonable grounds to suspect that you have either committed a crime or are in the process of committing a crime.

Even based on police experience, a simple hunch, or gut feeling, does not meet that threshold.

So the circumstances surrounding your arrest and interaction with the police are critical. These circumstances must be evaluated in detail in the context of your charter rights.

And, in some circumstances, may lead to charges against you, being withdrawn.

What are some defences to assault??

A common defence to assault is self-defence. Whether this defence is available will depend upon whether a person reasonable fears for his or her safety and whether the application of force was proportional in the circumstances.

What is the penalty for simple assault?

For simple assault, the maximum penalty you can receive is 6 months in jail and/or $5,000 fine for a summary conviction, and 5 years in jail if the Crown Attorney proceeds by indictment.

How Long does a criminal charge stay on your record?

Generally, it will remain unless you apply for a pardon, and this could take years, decades, or more

What is the penalty for aggravated assault?

Every one who commits an aggravated assault is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding fourteen years. (b) the person is at least eighteen years of age and there is no resulting bodily harm.

Dan Joffe Explains How to Get Charges Withdrawn
(But we can explain much clearer by getting in touch with us directly by clicking below)
A free call may lead to a higher chance of getting your charges withdrawn than doing it yourself.
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