Baltimore Assault Lawyer
Assault is a serious, yet all-too-common, crime in Baltimore. According to FBI statistics, 3,605 aggravated assaults were reported in the city in 2012.
Baltimore and the Maryland state government are making efforts to increase the enforcement of assault laws. Accordingly, if you are facing assault charges, there may be serious consequences if convicted. Potential consequences include not only incarceration, but also future difficulties in obtaining work, housing, or financial opportunities. An important step in facing assault charges is contacting a Baltimore assault lawyer who can assist you in understanding the charges and the potential consequences if you are convicted.
Call today to discuss your case with a criminal defense attorney in Baltimore.
Types of Assault in Baltimore
In Maryland, Assault is defined as an intentional touching of another that causes physical injury or an intentional act to cause a person to reasonably fear imminent harm (MD Code Section 3-201).
First Degree Assault
Assault is divided into two degrees. Assault in the first degree is the intentional causing or attempt to cause serious physical injury—defined as physical injury that creates a substantial risk of death or permanent or protracted serious disfigurement, loss of function of any bodily member or organ, or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ—or to commit an assault with a firearm (MD Code Section 3-202). For more information on what kind of injuries may result in felony first degree assault charges, contact a knowledgeable Baltimore assault lawyer today.
Second Degree Assault
Assault in the second degree is the intentional causing or attempt to cause non-serious physical injury (MD Code Section 3-203).
A person may not recklessly create a substantial risk of death or serious physical injury to another—or discharge a firearm from a motor vehicle such that it creates a substantial risk of death or serious physical injury to another—except when such reckless conduct involves the use of a motor vehicle or the manufacture or sale of a product or commodity (MD Code Section 3-204).
Special Cases of Assault
Baltimore assault lawyers can also help with more specific assault-related charges. Maryland law has also codified special cases of assault, including assault by motor vehicle while under the influence, poisoning or contamination, and assault by bodily fluids.
Assault by motor vehicle while under the influence is codified in MD Code Section 3-211. This law prohibits a person from causing life-threatening injury as a result of negligent driving; operating a motor vehicle or vessel while under the influence of alcohol per se (defined as 0.08 grams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood); or operating a motor vehicle or vessel while impaired by alcohol, drugs, or a controlled dangerous substance (except where the driver is entitled by law to use such controlled dangerous substance).
Penalties for Assault in Baltimore
The maximum penalties described below are largely prescribed by statute, but that does not mean that you will be sentenced with maximum jail time or fines. To learn more about how Baltimore courts determine penalties for assault in specific cases, consult with an experienced Baltimore assault lawyer today.
The penalty for assault in the first degree is imprisonment for a maximum of 25 years. The penalty for assault in the second degree is imprisonment for a maximum of 10 years and/or a maximum fine of $2,500.
Reckless endangerment is a misdemeanor offense and carries a maximum sentence of five years’ imprisonment and/or a fine of $5,000.
Assault resulting in life-threatening injury by a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or a controlled dangerous substance carries a penalty of imprisonment for a maximum of three years and/or a maximum fine of $5,000; if the driver is impaired by alcohol or drugs, the maximum sentence is two years’ imprisonment and/or a fine of $3,000.
Conviction for attempted poisoning results in a sentence of two to 10 years’ imprisonment; contamination of a water supply or food or drink carries a maximum sentence of 20 years’ imprisonment.
Assault by forcing ingestion of bodily fluids is a misdemeanor with a maximum sentence of 10 years’ imprisonment and/or a fine of $2,500.
Call a Baltimore Assault Attorney Today
The penalties for the various assault crimes under Maryland law are very severe. However, there may be mitigating circumstances in your case or defenses that you may be able to raise at trial. An experienced Baltimore assault lawyer can help you defend yourself against assault charges and advocate your side of the story. Call our firm today for your free consultation.