Montgomery County Assault Lawyer
If you are involved in a physical altercation, you could find yourself facing criminal charges you never expected. Allegations of domestic violence or assault often occur as a result of a heated exchange, when both sides of the story are not given equal weight. Hiring a Montgomery County criminal lawyer is the first step in fighting an assault charge. Find out how our criminal defense team can help.
Necessity of Hiring Assault Lawyer in MoCo
Anytime a person is accused of involvement in a crime—including misdemeanor or felony assault—it is important have legal counsel and defense representation. Your attorney can help by:
- Preparing you for court hearings
- Advising you about the best actions for your case
- Cautioning you against mistakes that could damage your case
- Negotiating reduced charges
- Protecting and preserving your rights
- Defending your innocence
In any disagreement, there are at least two sides to the story. An assault case is no different. Often, the arrest is made based on subjective or even false information and witness statements about which party was the instigator and which was the victim.
Your assault lawyer can make sure the Montgomery County Circuit Court hears your side of the story.
Maryland Assault Laws and Penalties
Although “assault” and “battery” are two separate terms relating to the threat of harm (assault) and non-consensual physical contact (battery), Maryland Code § 3-201 uses the term “assault” to describe an assault, a battery, or assault and battery.
In subsequent statutes, the law defines three types of assault:
- First Degree Assault – Felony
- Second Degree Assault – Felony
- Reckless Endangerment – Misdemeanor
Each crime carries the potential for serious consequences—up to 25 years in prison for first degree assault.
A MoCo assault lawyer can explain the specific assault charge you face and create a defense strategy designed to bring you positive results.
Assault in the First Degree
Maryland Code § 3-202 defines first degree assault as any assault that uses a firearm or involves serious bodily injury. Serious bodily injury, according to Maryland law, is any injury that causes a significant risk of death, that is disfiguring or disabling, or that results in the loss or impairment of any part of the body.
The maximum sentence for first degree assault is 25 years in prison.
Assault in the Second Degree
Like first degree assault, second degree assault is a felony. It carries a lesser maximum penalty, but the possibility of up to 10 years in prison is nothing to take lightly.
Second degree assault, as defined by Maryland Code § 3-203, is an assault that results in more substantial injuries than just minor injuries, but do not reach the level of serious bodily injury as defined by § 3-201.
Assault on a law enforcement officer or emergency worker, including firefighters and emergency medical technicians, is likewise prosecuted as second degree assault.
Maryland Code § 3-204 defines reckless endangerment as engaging in an activity that creates substantial risk of injury or death, including the discharge of a firearm from a vehicle.
Although reckless endangerment is a misdemeanor rather than a felony, it carries a maximum sentence of 5 years in prison and warrants attention from a Maryland assault attorney.
Work With an Attorney Who Can Help
When dealing with serious criminal charges, local experience can make all the difference in the world. It’s important not only to find an attorney whom you’re comfortable with, but who regularly defends clients in the court where your charges will be heard. Call us now to speak with an assault lawyer with experience litigating in the Montgomery County Court system.