What Is The Definition Of Assault Under California State Law?
Assault is defined as performing an intentional act that is likely to result in the use of force against another person. There are different categories of assaults. We commonly see domestic violence offenses charged as assaults, assaults where a weapon is used, and minor assaults such as bar fights or minor domestic violence situations. Factors that can enhance these charges would include the use of weapon assaults causing physical injuries. Assaults can be charged as misdemeanors or felonies. However, if a weapon is involved or an injury results, it will typically be charged as a felony.
How Does The Degree Of An Injury Affect An Assault Charge?
In California, if a victim is injured as a result of an assault, the prosecution will add on an allegation of great bodily injury. The allegation of great bodily injury is what can turn an assault charge into a serious felony and a strike under the Three Strikes Law.
Does a Victim Need To Have Been Injured For An Assault To Have Occurred?
In California, there is no requirement that the victim actually be injured for an assault to have occurred.
What Are The Potential Penalties And Sentences For Assault Convictions?
The penalty for an assault depends upon whether the offenses is charged as a misdemeanor or a felony. In California, misdemeanor assaults have a maximum punishment of one year in county jail. However, in felony assaults, there is the potential of state prison and a lengthy prison sentence if a weapon was used or if a victim suffered serious injuries.
What Are The Potential Defenses Used In Assault Cases?
The most common defense in an assault case is self-defense. We see self-defense in the overwhelming majority of defenses presented in these cases. The other defense would simply be that there was a misidentification and that the wrong individual was accused.
What Happens If The Alleged Victim Retracts Their Statement Or No Longer Wants To Press Charges?
In California, when a victim retracts their statement, it typically has little to no effect on whether or not charges are pursued. It is quite common for those who make assault allegations, particularly in domestic violence situations, to recant their statements at a later time. Although their desire to prosecute or not to prosecute may have an effect on the ultimate punishment, it rarely has any effect on the prosecution’s decision whether or not to file charges.
Won’t Hiring An Attorney Make Me Look Guilty?
Hiring an attorney has no impact, in the court’s eyes, on guilt or innocence. It is strongly advised to hire an experienced attorney if one is facing assault charges.
Can I Just Handle It On My Own And Tell The Truth In Court?
In assault cases, as with any criminal charges, it is imperative to hire a competent attorney. It is never a good idea to represent yourself in a criminal matter, as a conviction of any type can have lifelong consequences.
What Makes Your Firm Best Suited To Handle Assault Cases In California?
Liberty Lawyers has extensive experience in assault cases. We have represented hundreds of individuals who have been charged with assault or battery and have handled countless domestic violence matters, for which we have obtained excellent results, many times resulting in dismissed or non-filed charges.
For more information on Assault Charges In The State Of California, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (619) 383-2931 today.
Call us 24/7 For A Free Consultation