3.3) Aggravated criminal damage

What does CDA 1971 S 1(2) provide with regards to aggravated criminal damage?
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Terms in this set (15)
'A person who without lawful excuse destroys of damages any property, whether belonging to himself or another -
o intending to destroy or damage any property or being reckless as whether any property would be destroyed or damaged; and
o intending by the destruction or damage to endanger life of another or being reckless as to whether the life of another would be thereby endangered;
shall be guilty of an offence.'
- Dudley had a grievance against the 'J' family
- He consumed drink and drugs and threw a fire bomb at their house
- The fire was extinguished by the J family and only trivial damage was caused
- D's counsel claimed that it must be proved that he intended to endanger life or had been reckless as to whether life was endangered by the actual damage caused and that as the damage caused was not great, he could not have been reckless as to endangering life
What happened in R v Steer?The defendant had fired three shots through a window.What was held in R v Steer?- This did not constitute the offence under the CDA 1971, s 1(2) because any risk to life intended or foreseen had been by the bullets fired and not by the damaged property - It was held that there had to be a causal link between the damage to property and the danger to life - If the damage is caused by fire, the risk to life will always be from the damaged propertyWhat did Lord Bridge of Harwich point out in R v Steer?- 'It is not the match and the inflammable materials, the flaming firebrand or any other inflammatory agent which the arsonist uses to start the fire which causes danger to life, it is the ensuing conflagration which occurs as the property which has been set on fire is damaged or destroyed - When [whether] the victim in the bedroom is overcome by the smoke or incinerated by the flames as the building burns, it would be absurd to say that this does not result from the damage to the building'What happened in R v Webster?- The defendants had pushed a coping stone from a bridge onto a train, which had hit a carriage showering the passengers with debris from the roof - The conviction had been based on a direction that intent to endanger life by the stone falling on a passenger would sufficeWhat was held in R v Webster?- The court substituted a conviction based on recklessness (per Taylor CJ): - 'If the defendant's intention is that the stone itself should crash through the roof of a train or motor vehicle and thereby directly injure a passenger, or if he was reckless only as to that outcome, the section would not bite - If, however, the defendant intended or was reckless that the stone would smash the roof of the train or vehicle so that metal or wood struts from the roof would or obviously might descend upon a passenger, endangering life, he would surely be guilty - This may seem to many a dismal distinction'