Fredericksburg Assault Lawyer
Assault is a crime that involves intentionally inflicting bodily harm on another person or engaging in an overt act with the intent to place another person in fear of bodily har. Fredericksburg officers treat assault cases seriously and arrests are usually made relatively quickly. Assault cases are considered violent crimes, so there is a general presumption that the defendant is a violent person, and therefore there is a high possibility of severe penalties and extensive imprisonment time if convicted.
For this reason, it is crucial that a person charged with an assault crime contact a Fredericksburg assault lawyer right away. A defense lawyer in Fredericksburg knows the law, the elements required for the state to meet its burden, and realistic defenses that are is necessary to help a person protect their interests when dealing with an assault case.
Types of Assault Offenses
There are numerous kinds of assault, such as simple assault, assault and battery, and domestic assault, which are misdemeanors or low-level assault charges. On the other hand, assault on a law enforcement officer and an assault based on race, religion, color, or national origin are more serious, aggravated assault charges and are therefore felony offenses.
Notably, there is a difference between assault and assault and battery. Assault is an attempt to harm someone, whereas assault and battery requires both attempt and actual physical contact. Physical contact is not necessary to establish assault and instead is considered an attempted battery. However, as long as the alleged victim has a reasonable apprehension of bodily harm, or in layman’s terms, a fear that harm will come to them, an assault has occurred and an assault lawyer in Fredericksburg should be contacted.
The possible penalties for simple assault, which is a misdemeanor in Virginia, are up to 12 months in jail and a $2,500 fine. However, assault on law enforcement officers and an assault based on race, religion, color or national origin are both class six felonies and can result in a penalty of up to five years of incarceration. Assault on officers automatically has a mandatory six-month sentence in jail, while assault based on race, religion, color or national origin has a mandatory minimum jail sentence of 30 days. No matter which offense an individual is charged with, however, all assault offenses are treated seriously and therefore warrant attention from a Fredericksburg assault attorney.
Working with a Lawyer
A Fredericksburg assault lawyer will look for videos, photos, statements, eyewitness testimony, and anything else available that could be favorable to a case when preparing to defend the defendant in an assault case.
When challenging a prosecution’s case, the attorney will look for inconsistent statements to impeach the prosecution’s witness. The attorney will evaluate whether there are any factors that have impacted the witness’ willingness to be indecisive or untruthful and will also argue defenses, such as self-defense or lack of intent in an assault case.
An experienced assault lawyer will know what to look for during an investigation, will diligently review all of the defendant’s statements, and will be familiar with the elements required for establishing that an assault was committed. As such, an experienced assault attorney can find the nuances in a case and can defend and protect their interests.