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Criminal Practice

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As a defense Boris could argue that the action of PC Ali in jumping on the bonnet of the car should give rise to a finding of contributory negligence as the officer deliberately put himself in danger by his actions4. A further defense that Boris might attempt to use is the fact that he has been diagnosed as having a personality disorder. This might help to reduce or extinguish the charges5. He might try to argue provocation as an alternative, for which he would have to prove that Ali’s actions were provocative6. in order to give an answer as to liability, it is necessary to examine the mens rea of Boris at the time of the incident. He has stated that his intention was to frighten Ali and not cause him injury or kill him7. In R v Mann8 the courts reduced the sentence imposed after finding that it was not the intention of the defendant to harm the victim but just to frighten him.

When looking at Boris’s intention it is important to emphasize the point that at the time he was trying to escape from the office so that he would not be arrested. With this in mind, the case of R v Fitzgerald9 might assist. In this case, the defendant drove off in an attempt to escape the police. The police officer tried stopping the defendant by clinging on to the front of the car. The defendant drove for some distance with the officer still clinging to the front of the car. Unable to control the vehicle properly the defendant crashed the car and was subsequently arrested. No one sustained any serious injury as a result but the defendant was charged with assaulting a police officer and attempting to resist arrest.
The case of Ferguson v HM Advocate10 is based on similar facts to the one mentioned above. In this case, the defendant fled from the police whilst an officer was clinging to the door.