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Examination Timing: 00H00M47S

A woman was travelling on a train late at night when she was approached by a man holding a large knife. The woman ran away and fell, injuring her knee. The man had not intended to cause the woman any injury and had not realised that his actions created a risk of injury. The man did realise that his actions created a risk that the woman would fear that she would be subjected to immediate unlawful force. Can the man be guilty of assault occasioning actual bodily harm?

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For the offence of assault occasioning actual bodily harm (ABH) under Section 47 of the Offences Against the Person Act 1861, the prosecution must prove that an assault occurred and that it occasioned actual bodily harm. In this scenario, the man realised that his actions with the knife created a risk that the woman would fear immediate unlawful force, which constitutes an assault. Although he did not intend to cause injury, the injury resulted from the woman's reasonable reaction to the assault. Therefore, his realisation of the risk of causing fear of immediate unlawful force, combined with the resulting injury, satisfies the requirements for ABH. 


Key Point: This question addresses the elements of assault occasioning actual bodily harm, emphasizing the importance of understanding how fear of immediate unlawful force and resulting injury can constitute ABH, even without specific intent to injure.

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