Youth Rehabilitation Order quashed following appeal

Leah Connolly

21 August 2023

Our youth client (who was 14 years old) appealed sentence upon conviction for four offences.

The Defendant was sentenced for two counts of ABH, one count of common assault, one count of using threatening words or behaviour to cause harassment, and one count of racially aggravated harassment. The Youth Court imposed a 9-month Youth Rehabilitation Order.

On appeal, it was successfully submitted to the Court that the Youth Court had failed to give proper consideration and weight to the age of the defendant at the time, and the multiple disorders identified by a psychologist who had been instructed by these offices ahead of her sentencing.

Furthermore, it was submitted that the delays of up to 11 months to arrive at a charging decision rendered the Youth Rehabilitation Order unjust, as at the date of sentencing, the Defendant had not committed an offence for almost 12 months. Furthermore, it was submitted that the Magistrates’ consideration of custody was a manifestly incorrect view of the sentencing options available to a 13-year-old defendant who is not persistent in their offending.

At the Crown Court, the Youth Rehabilitation Order was quashed and replaced with a Referral Order.

Leah Connolly prepared this case. Lucy Waterstone of 9 Bedford Row Chambers was instructed.

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