Assault is a violent crime, and the law treats people convicted of these crimes harshly, often leading to jail and probation. An assault conviction could also affect your immigration status, employment prospects, and ability to hold a professional license, get a mortgage, or own a gun. If you were arrested for assault or are facing charges, seek help from a seasoned criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.
A Lake Mary assault lawyer could present a vigorous defense to ensure you receive all the protections the criminal justice system offers the accused. If getting charges dismissed is not possible, a local advocate could seek the most favorable resolution possible under the circumstances. Call The Umansky Law Firm today to find out more information.
Although the law considers assault to be a violent crime, a person does not need to make any physical contact with an alleged victim to face an assault charge. According to Florida Statutes § 784.001, any action that combines a threat to inflict physical harm with the capacity to carry out the threat could be an assault. For example, raising a hand at someone in a threatening manner could be an assault, even if the hand never strikes.
Aggravated assault is an assault carried out when the alleged assailant possesses a deadly weapon but does not use it with the intent to kill. Striking or threatening to strike a person with a gun could be aggravated assault. A prosecutor might also suggest an aggravated assault charge if an individual allegedly assaulted someone while committing another felony.
Simple assault is a second-degree misdemeanor in most cases. First offenders could be sentenced to jail for up to 60 days and a $500 fine. Aggravated assault is a third-degree felony and could lead to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine. If the assault did not involve physical contact or produce a significant injury, a Lake Mary attorney could present a case to attempt to reduce the charges to a non-violent offense.
Defenses specific to assault often center on intent. The prosecutor must prove that the accused intended to threaten the alleged victim and had the means to carry out the threat. Evidence on these points might be weak, and a defense attorney could use the weakness as leverage to get the prosecutor to drop the charge. Evidence that the accused acted in self-defense, defense of others, or defense of property also could defeat an assault charge.
Charges are more serious when the alleged victim of an assault is a public servant. If someone allegedly threatens the officer physically or verbally and has the capacity to carry out the threat causing the officer to fear for their safety, the person could face charges under Florida Statute § 784.07. The accused could face this charge if the alleged victim of the assault was a:
The identity of the alleged victim increases the severity of the charge. For example, a simple assault on someone entitled to the protection of this law will be a first-degree misdemeanor rather than a second-degree misdemeanor. Similarly, an aggravated assault against a public servant is a second-degree felony rather than a third-degree felony, and the offense carries a minimum three-year prison term. Contacting a Lake Mary assault defense attorney could help an individual better understand the charges against them and whether they involve a public employee.
If you are facing assault charges, you should enlist the help of an accomplished Lake Mary assault lawyer as soon as you can. A legal professional could examine the details of your situation and advocate to get the charges reduced or dismissed. You deserve the best future possible. Call our firm today to set up an initial consultation.
The Umansky Law Firm Criminal Defense & Injury Attorneys