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Proving Fredericksburg Assault Cases 

When it comes to proving Fredericksburg assault cases, the burden of proof falls heavily on the prosecutors. As a result, prosecutors take a determined and single-minded approach to pursuing assault cases. With the stakes so high, it is imperative that you work with an equally determined lawyer who can advocate for you. If you have been charged with assault, get in contact a capable assault lawyer who can build you a solid defense.

Intention of the Prosecution

The prosecution is trying to prove that there was either a touching or an attempt at contact and that contact was unwanted by the accuser.  Or that the attempt to contact was made and was done with the intent to do some form of harm to the person.

Essentially the prosecutor is going to assess whether there was contact, whether the contact was unwanted or not, and if the person initiating contact intended to do harm when they initiated it. A person does not have to bruise somebody.

Importance of Intent

Anytime that any physical contact with another person who does not want to be touched is done, it must be an intent to do harm. One of the keys to proving Fredericksburg assault cases is proving the intent to do harm because that is what differentiates a criminal assault and just an annoying contact because in a criminal assault a person has that extra layer of trying to hurt somebody.

An example of this would be if someone went up to another person and put their arm around the person’s shoulder. It would be obvious that the person is not trying to choke out the other person, and so,  even if the other person did not want to be touched it is still not a criminal act. It is annoying and there may be some civil liability there if the person were somehow damaged from having the person put their arm around their shoulder.

In contrast, if someone puts their arm over another person’s shoulder with the intention of putting them in a headlock, then it is criminal assault. It is someone trying to impose their will on another person in a way that harms them. That is the distinction between the two scenarios.

Reasonable Fear

When proving Fredericksburg assault cases, the presence of reasonable fear is an important element, in conjunction with the presence of intent to harm. Someone can jokingly pretend that they are going to hit someone, with the intent to disturb them, and still be charged with assault even if they did not actually hit the person. However, that only applies if that fear the other person has is reasonable. If they are playing or joking, then the Commonwealth has the burden of proving that whatever fear that other person possessed was a reasonable fear. If the story is they are play fighting and all of the sudden the person just got scared randomly, they are going to have a hard time proving that the fear was reasonable.

The reason that there is a distinction between assault and assault and battery is that they want to punish people who are essentially attempting to batter somebody but cannot actually go through with it for one reason or another. Like, if a person raises their hand to slap an individual in the face and swing at them and the person ducked,  they should not be free from all criminal intent and liability because the person had quick reflexes and so if  someone hit them, they can still charge that person with assault and battery but if they duck and get away, they can still be charged with the assault even though they never actually made contact with that person, because intent to harm and reasonable apprehension or fear were present.

Value of a Lawyer

If you have been charged with assault, contact a skilled lawyer. Prosecutors are relentless when it comes to proving Fredericksburg assault cases and you deserve an attorney that will be equally relentless in defense of your case. Your lawyer can collect the necessary evidence, attempt to dispute elements of the prosecution’s case (like whether there was reasonable fear or not), and dedicate the time and resources necessary to build your case. Get in touch with a lawyer who will fight for you.

Patrick Woolley Attorney At Law

Patrick Woolley Attorney At Law
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Patrick Woolley Attorney At Law
18 Liberty St SW
#200

Leesburg VA 20175
Times: 7am to 11pm - Mon to Sun
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Patrick Woolley Attorney At Law
32 Waterloo St
#301

Warrenton VA 20186
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Patrick Woolley Attorney At Law
9119 Church Street
#14

Manassas VA 20110
Times: 7am to 11pm - Mon to Sun
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