Arundel Mills Assault Lawyer
In Maryland, there are different classifications for assault, the most serious of which have penalties exceeding 20 years of incarceration. Therefore, if you have been charged with assault, it is important to understand the specific assault charge and the penalties associated with that offense.
An experienced Arundel Mills assault lawyer will explain your charges, the penalties, and possible defenses, while working to resolve your criminal case with the least negative impact on your future. To learn more or discuss your case, call and schedule a consultation with a defense attorney in Arundel Mills today.
Types of Assault Charges
Assault charges in Arundel Mills are classified as assault, battery, or assault and battery. Assault requires that the accused have intent to harm or create fear of harm in another person, but it does not require that the accused have the ability to follow through. Issuing a threat to someone may constitute assault even if the person who makes the threat lacks the physical ability to follow through on the threat.
Battery is unwanted contact with a person that results in harm to the person touched or that is objectively offensive. As an Anne Mills assault lawyer can explain, there is no specific type of contact required to meet the battery standard, so roughly removing glasses from the face of another person could result in a battery charge just as punching that person would.
With that said, assault and battery requires that the accused have both the intent to harm or create a fear of being harmed and actual unwanted contact with the person that the threat was issued to. Within those broader terms, assault is also categorized based on the seriousness of the injury to the victim and who the victim was, among other factors.
How Does the Legal Process Work for an Assault Case?
After a person is charged with assault, they will be issued a Summons. This document notifies the defendant that they have been charged with a crime and will need to appear in court. A warrant may be issued for the accused’s arrest. In this case, the defendant would be held in custody.
In the defendant’s first court appearance, they will be notified of the charges against them and informed of their rights. The judge also determines the schedule for the rest of the case during this hearing.
Next is Discovery, in which both sides disclose evidence that they wish to submit to the court at trial. After going over the information presented in Discovery, the defendant decides how they want to plead. At this point the accused’s attorney may negotiate a plea deal with the prosecution or urge the defendant to plead not guilty.
If the defendant pleads not guilty to the assault charge, the case will go to trial. Conversely, if the accused pleads guilty, the case will go to sentencing. A skilled attorney familiar with assault charges could help an accused individual better understand the criminal justice process.
Penalties of Assault
Assault in the first degree necessitates that there be intent to cause, or an intentional attempt, to harm another person using a firearm. It is imperative those accused of this offense consult with an Arundel Mills assault attorney as the penalty, if convicted, for assault in the first degree is up to 25 years imprisonment.
Assault in the second degree has been established when the accused has threatened unwanted offensive or harmful contact with another person, despite there being injuries or a lack of injuries afterward. If convicted, the penalty for this misdemeanor offense is up to 10 years of incarceration and up to $2,500 fine.
Assault in the second degree on an officer has the same elements as assault in the second degree. The charge is increased to a felony when the person that is threatened is an officer that is performing official duties. The term officer includes police officers, probation officers, and other law enforcement entities. The penalty for this charge is incarceration for up to 10 years or a fine of up to $5,000.
Reckless endangerment is classified as an assault charge in Maryland. It requires that the accused engage in an act that creates a substantial risk of death or serious injury to another person.
Its reach is extended to include when this occurs because the accused discharged a firearm from a motor vehicle. If convicted, the penalty is up to five years incarceration and a fine of up to $5,000.
How an Arundel Mils Assault Attorney Can Help
If you have been charged with assault in Maryland, contact an experienced assault lawyer in Arundel Mills to evaluate your case, determine the best defense, and work to resolve the criminal charge in the most favorable way possible. To learn more or discuss the steps you can take to help before trial, call and schedule a consultation today.