Without legal aid, Ronald, a former volunteer fire fighter, failed an "in person" bail application. He had to endure six weeks in custody where he was badly assaulted.


Ronald is a decorated former volunteer firefighter who suffers from PTSD following the unsuccessful attempted rescue of two victims of a housefire.

He has been unemployed for almost a year.

His marriage broke down and he is accused by his estranged wife of stalking by the sending 760 text messages over a 15-day period. The messages are abusive, threatening, and in many cases, vulgar.

The police arrest Ronald and bail is refused on the grounds that Ronald is an unacceptable risk to reoffend.

Legal aid for a bail application is refused on the grounds of merit, and he is remanded in custody after a failed “in person” bail application.

His lawyer eventually is successful in seeking legal aid to represent him on a plea, but only after he has spent six weeks in custody, during which time he is badly assaulted.

He is released upon a plea, to comply with a community corrections order.

Result: significant deterioration of Ronald’s mental health, requiring more intense treatment. A plea on the remand hearing date would have likely produced the same sentencing result. A claim by Ronald for compensation as a victim of crime is likely to be successful.

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