Youth accused of attempted murder avoids custody

When BSB Partner Jonathan Black met him, 15-year old J had never seen the inside of a courtroom let alone a prison cell.

When BSB Partner met him, 15-year old J had never seen the inside of a courtroom let alone a prison cell. A few days earlier he had just completed his final GCSE when he arranged to meet an acquaintance to discuss a dispute over a watch. Fearing the other party would turn up with friends, J armed himself with a knife. When he was attacked, J used the knife, causing stab wounds to the victim’s upper body.


After two days of questioning, he was charged with attempted murder and brought before The Youth Court, where Jonathan Black successfully persuaded the court to unusually grant bail subject to a stringent bail package which he had worked with J’s family to prepare.

The Crown Prosecution Service used their powers to appeal the decision to grant bail. Mr Black appeared before the Crown Court where The Judge, impressed by the package of conditions that had been put in place, upheld the Magistrate’s decision to bail him.

The bail package enabled J to learn new life skills and attend college, opportunities that would not have been available to him had he been detained on remand.


When the case came to trial this spring, The Crown Prosecution Service was persuaded to accept a guilty plea to the unlawful wounding charge. Following the Youth Sentencing Guidelines, The Judge agreed not to send J to youth custody, but to allow the progress he had been making on bail to continue. He was made subject to a Youth Rehabilitation Order.

“In Thanking BSB J’s relative said, “Once again thank you so much for the wonderfully kind and skilful way in which you have helped and guided J and the family over the last nine months. We are truly stunned and relieved at the amazing result achieved today.”

If you are or know a young person in need of legal assistance please contact Jonathan Black or Cecilia Goodwin.