In England in 2019 there was a total of 78,140 “looked after” children, which is an increase of 4% from the previous year, 2018.
A “looked after child” is a child who was in the care of the local governmental authority for more than a day or 24 hours.
On July 7th this year, members of the public called 999 and reported to the police that a fight had broken out outside a local kebab shop on Shoreditch High Street.
According to police, our client ran from the officers when they arrived, giving a false name and address, and was subsequently arrested.
When at the police station, our client gave a no comment interview while unrepresented and was as a result charged.
As a result of this arrest, our client was charged with two counts of obstructing an officer and possession of cannabis.
Criminal defence solicitor from Stuart Miller Solicitors, Kathleen Joyce, presented expert representations to the Crown and Youth Offending Services.
Kathleen requested support from the Youth Offending Services in order to obtain a conditional discharge for our client. In contrast, the sentencing guidelines specify a referral period of six months.
When our client’s case went to court, Kathleen Joyce made representations to the court that mitigated that the client was a “looked after child”, meaning they were in the custody of the state for their care for a period in their life, and when arrested had no representation or solicitor at the police station.
Kathleen also made representations that if our client had not answered a “no comment” interview, he would not have been charged and would have instead been cautioned for this incident.
As a result of her expert representation, case management and well-coordinated requests, Kathleen’s request was agreed to by the court.
Our client received a 6-month conditional charge. This meant no custodial sentence was received and no cost orders were implemented.