Reckless Conduct Endanger Life in Victoria

The offence for reckless conduct endanger life in Victoria requires the prosecution to prove beyond reasonable doubt that you:

  • engaged in particular conduct;
  • voluntarily;
  • with potential to endanger life (s22) or cause serious injury (s23);
  • were reckless in doing so; and
  • the conduct was not authorised by law

The Penalty

Section 22 & section 23 of the Crimes Act states that if convicted of Reckless Conduct Endangering Life or Serious Injury, you may receive a maximum penalty of 5 to 10 years imprisonment.

First time offenders may be able to escape an immediate jail sentence with a Good Behaviour Bond. However this requires a strong defence team and experienced legal representation.

Can I Defend the Charge?

Whether you have a defence will depend on the following considerations:

  • If you engaged in the conduct alleged;
  • Whether the conduct presented an “appreciable” or “foreseeable” risk of death or serious injury to another; and/or
  • Whether a reasonable person in your position could foresee that engaging in the conduct would result in an appreciable risk of death or serious injury

The type of defence that is most suitable to you is also a relevant determination. It is important for a lawyer to consider whether a lesser charge is a possibility or appropriate. The difference it could make to your criminal record is significant. As certain alternative charges may be available that carry less criminality but impose worse implications on your licence. These charges are frequently laid in relation to driving matters but do not have any mandatory licence disqualification. That is when compared to dangerous driving which has 6-12 months.

Whether a defence is available to you is the first consideration an experienced lawyer will determine. Followed by which type of defence is most appropriate, all things considered.