Building a Fredericksburg Assault on an Officer Defense

In Fredericksburg, assaults on an officer are not taken lightly in court, commonly resulting in severe penalties and sentences. The consequences can have a devastating effect on someone’s life including employment issues that only perpetuate after a conviction. Someone that has been charged with this offense should consult with a highly skilled assault lawyer as soon as possible. Fredericksburg assault lawyers have extensive knowledge and experience in these cases, that can go a long in court.

What Do Prosecutors Need to Prove in an Assault on an Officer Case?

There are three elements that must be proven in an assault and battery on law enforcement officer case. First, the prosecutor must prove that the incident was an assault and battery. Second, they must prove that the person who was the victim was a law enforcement officer. Third, they must prove the law enforcement officer was engaged in their official duties.

Difference Between Simple Assault and Assault on an Officer

The differences between a simple assault and assault on an office are the alleged victim in the case is a law enforcement officer who is considered a more credible witness by the court because they are involved in law enforcement. Additionally, the person is not being tried for a misdemeanor charge; they are being tried for a felony charge with serious repercussions.

The minimum penalty a person can receive when they are found guilty of assault and battery on a law enforcement officer is six months in jail. Six months in jail is nearly the maximum sentence for someone found guilty of simple assault. In Virginia, a 12-month sentence requires the person serves six months because of the way Virginia calculates time served for misdemeanor offenses. However, with a mandatory minimum sentence, the person is required to serve the entire sentence.

Police Body Cameras Impact on the Case

Body cameras can be important in an assault in a law enforcement officer cases. Sometimes body camera footage can be misleading when the actions of the parties cannot be seen. It may be possible to only hear the officer narrate what is taking place. It is possible that an officer can fabricate or exaggerate their narration.

The use of body cameras by the police reduced the use of assault on a law enforcement officer cases. A prosecutor can attempt to charge a person with this unnecessarily to leverage the charges against other misdemeanor cases. Body cameras keep both sides honest and help prosecutors understand the true version of what happened.

Potential Defenses

The defenses in an assault on a law enforcement officer case may be limited and may extend depending on the type of touching that is alleged. For example, if the officer uses force and the person being charged uses the least amount of force possible to resist that force; that can be a potential defense depending on the factual circumstances of the case. There is a different type of instruction for self-defense and things of that nature when the victim is a law enforcement officer.

Benefit of a Lawyer

The council of a Fredericksburg assault on an officer lawyer can be indispensable if you have been charged with assaulting law enforcement. The penalties for assaulting officers are typically harsher and the accompanying stigma can add difficulty to your life moving forward. Having a reputation for getting violent with officers can hinder access to opportunities and police officer’s will be more wary of you, should they come into contact with you. However, if you reach out to a determined defense attorney, you can rest assured that they can fight for you.

Fredericksburg Assault on an Officer Lawyer