I have been charged with an offence of common assault and intend to plead not guilty. What will happen at court?
If you plead not guilty to a charge of common assault, the case cannot be dealt with at court on the day. There will be an initial brief plea hearing when the not guilty plea will be entered to the charge of common assault. No evidence will be heard. The case will then be fixed for a further hearing date sometime thereafter.
At the second hearing date the court will hear prosecution and defence evidence together with representations from the defence lawyers and then make a decision if the person is guilty or not guilty of common assault.
If a person is found not guilty of a common assault charge that that is the end of the case and they are free to go. If a person is found guilty of s common assault charge , if there are no aggravating features and it is not a domestic violence related case, the court will probably finalise the case on the day. If however the common assault charge has aggravating features or is domestic violence related, the court will adjourn for the preparation of a presentence report.