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What is intimidation in NSW? – Public Order



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51-year-old Stuart MacGill has been accused of intimidating a
bar owner in Sydney, calling her a “C*& t”.

The cricket great, who appeared at the
Downing Centre Court
House on Thursday 14 July
for day one of a defended hearing to face the allegations, has
claimed that he was approached by the alleged victim only so that
she can intimidate him. The court heard that he told police in an
interview that she has been stalking him for over a year.

Stuart and his friend Stephen Kerlin are accused of approaching
Samantha Ford in Sydney on the 1 February outside the Lord Nelson
pub.

It is alleged that the two men approached her at about 6pm where
she was called a “C*& t”, was told to “stick it
up your a**”.

A witness has said that the men were being “very loud”
and heard one of the men say “f**k you b***h to Ms. Ford.

The court was told that Stuart and Stephen went into the Captain
Cook Hotel in Millers Point before Ms. Ford followed and also
entered the bar with a dog. The court was told that inside a
further confrontation occurred where CCTV footage shows the men
approach her.

A member of the bar staff said that Stuart was shouting at her
with aggressive mannerisms, leaned over to her and shouted at her,
consequentially causing a scene.

At one point, the CCTV footage shows Stuart approaching her,
jabs his finger towards her face before retreating. After the pub
staff intervene, the camera footage shows Ms. Ford leaving the
venue.

Stuart has said, that “there was only one reason she
approached us and that was to intimidate us.”

He also said, “I felt intimidated and acted accordingly…
despite being told to go away, Samantha Ford refuses to go away,
refuses to leave people alone, she will follow them incessantly and
intimidate without regard for anybody’s feelings.”


The hearing was unable to reach a conclusion
due to the busy
court list and will resume on 30 January 2023 at the Downing Centre
Local Court. The
apprehended violence order
in place continues
on an interim basis to the same date.

WHAT IS INTIMIDATION IN NSW?


What’s the meaning of
“intimidation”
? The law
says that ‘intimidation’ is behaviour that amounts to
harassment, molestation, approaching a person that causes fear of
safety, or any other behaviour that causes a reasonable
apprehension of violence or injury to someone. This includes damage
to a person’s property, or harm to an animal that belongs or
belonged to a person.

When the courts determines whether an alleged act is considered
at law ‘
intimidation
‘ the court can consider whether there’s
been any past pattern of violence by the accused.

Cyber bullying via social media, email or text messages can also
amount to intimidation at law.


Section 7
of the Crimes (Domestic and Personal Violence) Act
2007 (NSW) reflects the law on what amounts to intimidation in New
South Wales.

The case of Kelly v R in 2007 was a case involving the actions
of a public officer against a person. The case said that the
concept of official action being taken by a public officer against
a person, even if it involves rude, aggressive or upsetting
language or alleged overzealous actions does not amount to
‘intimidation’ under the law.

In facts, rude, offensive and boorish behaviour doesn’t
necessarily amount to conduct constituting fear of physical
violence.

In New South Wales, anyone who stalks or intimidates with the
intention of causing fear of physical or mental harm knowing the
conduct is likely to cause fear will be guilty attracting up to
5-years imprisonment and/or $5,500 fine, prescribed by section
13.

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