If you have been charged with assault, you may face considerable penalties ranging from mandatory fines to time in prison. The legal process can be confusing and challenging, but an experienced criminal defense attorney is available to help.
A Purcellville assault lawyer could review your case to identify any fundamental weaknesses in the charges that have been leveled against you. You may be able to fight for a reduction or dismissal of your charges with the help of a legal professional.
Code of Virginia § 18.2-57 defines assault and the range of possible punishments that may be enforced by the court if someone is convicted of this crime. A person may be found guilty of assault if they cause another individual to fear imminent harm, or they try to engage in hostile or injurious contact with that individual.
A person may face allegations of assault even if they did not actually touch the alleged victim. A similar but separate crime known as battery is when a person touches another person dangerously or insultingly without consent.
There are a wide range of assault offenses outlined by Virginia law, including:
A local attorney could advise what penalties may be levied based on the individual’s specific set of assault charges.
Given the various categories of assault recognized by Commonwealth law, the penalties for this offense are equally extensive in scope. A conviction for simple assault would be charged as a Class 1 misdemeanor, carrying a term of imprisonment up to one year and no more than $2,500 in fines. An individual convicted of assault and battery would be subject to the same legal penalties.
The penalties for assault are elevated when the criminal act is inflicted upon certain categories of persons. For instance, if an assault causes injury and is based on someone’s race, religion, or another hate-based motivation, it is a Class 6 felony. In the Commonwealth, Class 6 felonies may be punished by up to five years in jail, plus fines.
If an individual is found guilty of assaulting a police officer who was acting in their official capacity at the time of the incident, the crime would be punished as a felony violation subject to Class 6 felony penalties. In the case of assault involving intentional injury, the crime would be raised to a Class 3 felony, which is punishable by up to $100,000 fines and a 20-year prison sentence.
The penalties for assault could result in a significant deprivation of personal freedom as well as considerable economic losses. An assault attorney in the Purcellville area could be vital in representing the interests of the accused from the start of their case.
If you have been charged with assault, your first call should be to a Purcellville assault lawyer. An experienced attorney could stand up for your rights and provide skilled, aggressive defense at each stage of your proceedings. Call now to schedule a consultation.
Patrick Woolley Attorney At Law