Crime CLXXXVII-Criminal Damage XXVII

The decision in R v Steer (1987) was reaffirmed in the case of R v Wenton (2010) in that the endangerment to life must come from damage done to property or must be the result of damage that was done to property and not through some other means.

In R v Wenton (2010) the defendant threw a brick through a window of a residence that was home to a couple and their three children who were sleeping at the time. The defendant then threw a petrol canister into the house and pieces of lighted paper but fortunately the fire died away before the canister was set alight. The defendant’s fingerprints were found on the paper and the canister and the defendant was charged under s.1 of the Criminal Damage Act (1971) with emphasis given to s.1(2) of the act which is in reference to criminal damage endangering life. The defendant was convicted in the first instance and the defendant appealed.

The conviction was quashed on appeal. Despite the fact that the defendant had thrown a brick threw the window, the endangerment to life did not result from the broken window. The court reaffirmed the decision in R v Steer (1987). As far as s.1(2) of the Criminal Damage Act (1971) is concerned endangerment to life must come from the damage.

Copyright © 2018 by Dyarne Ward

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