Cecil County Assault Lawyer
Assault charges in Cecil County are serious business and should never be taken lightly. If a jury convicts you of assault, a judge could sentence you to jail time, fines, probation, or community service, among other penalties. A person facing such charges should contact an adept Cecil County assault lawyer.
Fortunately, individuals facing assault charges may have legal defenses available to them. In many assault cases, it is difficult to determine which party started the altercation. In other instances, the person facing assault charges may have been acting in self-defense. No matter your circumstances, when it comes to forming a good legal defense, your first step should be to call an experienced criminal defense attorney.
First-Degree Assault Charge
First-degree assault is a felony in Cecil County. Either of the following qualifies as first-degree assault:
- Attempting to cause – or actually causing – serious physical harm to another person
- Committing an assault crime using a firearm, such as a rifle, handgun, shotgun, antique firearm, short-barreled rifle, or short-barreled shotgun
If the prosecutor obtains a conviction against the accused of first-degree assault, a judge may sentence the accused to a maximum of 25 years in prison. The judge has the discretion to impose the maximum sentence or something less than the maximum sentence.
An assault lawyer in Cecil County can work with the state prosecutor to negotiate a charge reduction or argue before a judge for a lighter sentence. For example, under certain circumstances, a prosecutor may agree to reduce a first-degree assault charge down to second-degree assault.
Second-Degree Assault Charge
A second-degree assault charge is not as serious as a first-degree assault charge. While first-degree assault is a felony in Cecil County, second-degree assault is only a misdemeanor. However, a conviction for second-degree assault can still have very serious consequences.
The law defines second-degree assault as intentionally creating a reasonable apprehension of bodily harm in a victim. In order to qualify as second-degree assault, the victim’s fear must be reasonable, and the threat of harm must involve more than mere words.
If the prosecution obtains a conviction against the accused for second-degree assault, the maximum sentence which a judge can impose is ten years of incarceration and/or a maximum fine of $2,500. This potential fine may double if the accused assaulted a police officer, parole agent, probation agent, or other law enforcement officer in the scope of their employment. A Cecil County assault lawyer can review the circumstances of a second-degree assault charge and help the accused weigh their legal options.
Potential Defenses to an Assault Charge
Individuals charged with assault may be able to argue a legal defense. For example, the accused may allege that they acted in self-defense. They may also allege that they were not the initial aggressor in the altercation.
The accused could also introduce evidence showing that someone else was the true aggressor. This is especially true in cases of mistaken identity or where the accused has a good alibi.
Contact a Cecil County Assault Attorney
If you are in the midst of criminal proceedings involving a first or second-degree assault charge, you want an experienced defense lawyer representing you throughout your case. A Cecil County assault lawyer can explore your options and help you achieve the best possible outcome in your case.