Some of the most common yet most often misunderstood criminal allegations involve assault or battery. These two, separate but related legal concepts are among the most expansive under Florida law. While a battery involves making physical contact with another person, a court may charge you with assault even if contact never occurred. This means a person may be charged with assault even if they do not make contact. Depending on the circumstances behind the incident, assault or battery can be either a relatively minor charge or rise to the level of a felony. That is why you need a skilled defense attorney to assist you.
A Winter Park assault lawyer is dedicated to helping you understand why prosecutors are pursuing charges and could develop defenses that meet your needs, both in and out of court.
The basic foundation for the crime of assault is found in Florida Statute § 784.011. This law states that a basic assault involves an intentional and unlawful threat against the well-being of another person.
Winter Park’s assault laws state that a prosecutor may bring charges, and a court may convict a defendant, even if physical contact never occurred. This is because an assault involves a threat to hurt another when the alleged victim believes their safety to be in danger.
Most assaults are examples of misdemeanors of the second degree. This means that convictions can bring a maximum of 60 days in jail. However, many factors may contribute to making an assault a felony. Under Fla. Stat. § 784.021, a defendant’s use of a weapon to make a threat or a threat to commit a felony means that a prosecutor may pursue aggravated assault charges. These are felonies of the third degree. A Winter Park assault attorney could help show that a defendant did not make threats in a way that a reasonable person would believe counts as a threat to their well-being.
The concept of assault and battery go together in many people’s minds. However, these are separate concepts and criminal charges under state law. While an assault involves a threat to harm another person, a battery describes situations where a defendant makes contact with another.
According to Fla. Stat. § 784.03, prosecutors pursuing a battery case must prove that a defendant actually and intentionally makes unwelcome contact with another. Alternatively, they may try to prove that a defendant intentionally caused bodily harm to another person. Most instances of battery are misdemeanors in the first degree but people with prior convictions for battery may find that a prosecutor pursues the case as a felony of the third degree. Examples involving serious harm to another person or battery against a police officer or senior citizen may also result in a felony case.
A lawyer in Winter Garden is ready to provide a defense against all examples of assault and battery charges.
Assault charges can be some of the most complex cases in criminal law. It is important to realize the differences between assault cases and those that allege battery. Not only must a prosecutor prove that a violent action took place, but they also must prove the defendant’s state of mind during the incident.
A Winter Park assault lawyer can often defend an individual by showing that there was no intent to cause harm. In other cases, they can argue that the physical contact between the parties was an instance of self-defense. Every case is unique and an attorney is dedicated to identifying the best strategy to defend your rights in court. The consequences of a conviction can be harsh, so contact the Umansky Law Firm today to see how we might be able to protect you.
The Umansky Law Firm Criminal Defense & Injury Attorneys