News Criminal Defence 26th Mar 2021

Acquittal for Sallie Bennett-Jenkins QC in historic manslaughter charge

Sallie Bennett-Jenkins QC, leading Beth O’Reilly of 25 Bedford Row, has represented a defendant acquitted of manslaughter which arose from an incident in 2003 when he was aged 15.

CC had pleaded guilty to an offence of s20 GBH in 2004, following an assault committed when he was 15; the deceased was seen in hospital and despite unpleasant injuries including severe bruising and swelling to the head, had no injury to the brain. He was discharged from hospital the following day; 2 days later he collapsed and was admitted to hospital with an acute subdural haematoma which caused him to be in a persistent vegetative state until his death 17 years later. Charges of manslaughter were then brought against CC and KD.

The case invoked complex legal issues as to the original plea, the effect of S74 PACE 1984 and reverse burdens placed on defendants. Causation was a key issue and the case detailed consideration of medical evidence.

Sallie was instructed by Emma Sackville of Morrison Spowart Solicitors.

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