Allegations involving assault are among the most common criminal cases. This is due to the state’s wide-ranging definition of assault. While many accusations are relatively minor cases, a conviction may still result in harsh consequences. Additionally, certain types of assaults are felonies, which could lead to a sentence that changes your life forever.
A Shelton assault lawyer from Ruane Attorneys could defend your constitutional rights after an assault arrest. Our dedicated defense attorneys work with you to examine the facts, explain your charges, and create a defense to help you move on with your life.
What is Assault Under State Law?
The concept of assault can take on three separate definitions. According to Connecticut General Statute § 53a-61, an assault in the third degree involves:
- Causing physical injury to a person while intending to cause harm
- Recklessly causing physical injury to another person
- Causing harm to a person through the use of a deadly weapon while acting with criminal negligence
In the first scenario, the prosecution must prove that the defendant had the proper state of mind to commit an assault and intended to cause harm to the other person.
In other cases, the prosecutor must prove that a defendant acted recklessly or with criminal neglect. Fighting back against these concepts is one way an attorney may be able to help.
It may also be possible to dispute whether the incident took place at all. It is not uncommon for the accuser to misidentify an assailant or for police to use illegal tactics to perform a search or make an arrest. Hiring an attorney to evaluate the legality and strength of a prosecutor’s evidence could help to reduce the severity of assault charges or result in the outright dismissal of the case.
Potential Consequences Following an Assault Conviction in Shelton
Third-degree assault is a Class A misdemeanor, and a conviction can bring a maximum fine of $2,000 and a jail sentence of up to one year. However, people without a prior criminal record are likely to receive a far lesser penalty. Still, an assault lawyer could help to prevent these consequences.
There are many aggravating factors that could result in enhanced penalties for an assault. According to Conn. Gen. Stat. § 53a-60, a second-degree offense occurs when an assault results in serious bodily harm or when a defendant uses a weapon to inflict injury. In these cases, the assault charge is always a felony.
Another concept that could bring enhanced penalties is the identity of the accuser. For instance, attacking a police officer, child, or elderly person can result in a mandatory minimum jail sentence. No matter the exact circumstances that led to an arrest, a skilled attorney could help develop a defense to protect the defendant’s rights.
Contact a Shelton Assault Attorney Right Away
Any assault allegation is a serious matter. At the minimum, a conviction will lead to a criminal record and could force you to pay a heavy fine. More serious allegations could result in a lengthy jail term and label you as a felon.
A Shelton assault lawyer may be able to help you avoid these outcomes. Our legal team at Ruane Attorneys is here to defend your rights throughout your case. Reach out today so we can get to work helping you.