If you have been charged with a misdemeanor or felony assault, an Arlington assault lawyer can provide you with legal representation. You have options to try to avoid a guilty verdict, get charges dropped, or reduce the charges you face. An attorney in Arlington who has experience in assault cases can help you decide what course of action is the right one when as you respond to accusations against you.
As soon as you are questioned by police based on an alleged assault, you need to know your rights. You have the right to plead not guilty and not incriminate yourself, and you have the right to a lawyer. Getting help from an attorney is a smart choice because your lawyer can:
Every case is different and you need to decide what is right for you based on the accusations the prosecutor is making and the evidence the prosecutor will present. An Arlington assault lawyer provides guidance as you navigate the criminal court process so you will always be informed when you make the choices that will shape your future. At every step, your lawyer will be by your side and act as your advocate.
The crimes of assault and battery are grouped together under Virginia Code Section 18.2-57. Assault involves an imminent threat of unwanted contact and battery involves making unwanted contact. Most assaults result in misdemeanor charges, with the potential for a year in jail and a $2,500 fine if convicted. With the help of an Arlington assault lawyer, it is often possible to serve no jail time for a misdemeanor assault charge, especially for a first offense.
Felony assault charges are brought against defendants under certain circumstances, such as when an alleged victim experiences serious bodily injury and a prosecutor believes a defendant chose the victim based on race, national origin, or religion. Prosecutors may also bring felony assault charges against defendants who allegedly assaulted certain workers in the line of duty, including healthcare workers, school workers, corrections officers, or others in the criminal justice system.
When an assault case goes to trial, you do not have to prove you were innocent to be found not guilty. Your Arlington assault lawyer can make the argument that your actions were justified by self-defense or defense of others. Your attorney can also help you to introduce reasonable doubt about whether the prosecutor has proved an assault offense was committed. Reasonable doubt should be enough to avoid conviction.
To learn more about how a lawyer can provide you with assistance after an assault charge, contact an Arlington assault lawyer for help today.