The West

Green calls for tougher sentences
Campaign: Danny Green. Picture: Michael Wilson/The West Australian

Boxing champion Danny Green wants tougher local penalties for fatal one-punch assaults, after NSW last week promised the country's harshest punishment for the crime.

WA Attorney-General Michael Mischin said yesterday he would consider Green's call for WA to extend the sentence from its maximum of 10 years.

NSW last week upped the ante with a 25-year maximum jail term where drugs and alcohol were involved, or 20 years without, after the fatal one-punch assault of teenager Daniel Christie in Kings Cross. He died on January 11.

Green, who is running a campaign to stop the street violence, said WA's penalties were weak.

"I think penalties are way too soft and should well and truly reflect the severity of the crime, especially where an innocent person dies from an unprovoked attack," he said.

"Judges need to step up and place a higher value on an innocent life when delivering sentences."

Green praised NSW Premier Barry O'Farrell for his policies to stamp out alcohol-fuelled violence, including banning alcohol sales at city and Kings Cross bars after 3am.

Mr Mischin said the one-punch homicide offence was introduced in 2008 to punish cases where the assault led to death, but the death could not be proved to be other than accidental.

"I am not ruling out the prospect of increasing the penalty for accidentally causing death," he said.

"But I would need to be persuaded that the penalties being imposed by the courts are disproportionately low having regard to the criminality involved in particular cases."

Green wants the WA Government to impose a minimum sentence on the crime as promised in NSW, where perpetrators must serve at least eight years.

He said he was concerned "clever lawyers" could help perpetrators escape proper penalty.

But Mr Mischin was "less inclined" to seek minimum terms because assaults involved varying levels of moral culpability.

The West Australian

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