Human interactions can be complicated and sometimes misunderstood. Assault is the act of attempting to cause an offensive touching to another person. Battery is the act of actually carrying out the offensive touching, which can cause bodily harm or not. Outside of the legal world, however, assault is typically defined as any attack or harm done to another person by the assaulter.
The government punishes simple assault less severely than aggravated assault. If the police have accused you or a loved of assault, it may be helpful to speak with an experienced criminal attorney who may be able to explain to you the legal process and what laws may apply to your case.
A representative may be able to explain to you your rights and what defenses may be usable, considering the circumstances. Call today and see how a Virginia assault lawyer could help you while facing possible criminal charges.
There are various levels of assault in Virginia, but the two types are simple assault and aggravated assault. Simple assault is a Class 1 misdemeanor. Simple assault carries the penalty of up to one year in jail and/or a fine of $2,500. However, if the actor selected the other party because of race, religion, color or national origin, or the harmed individual was a public servant, the court can sentence the convicted person to at least six months in jail and the crime is a Class 6 felony (Code of Virginia Section 18.2-57). The court can find a person guilty of reckless endangerment of others if the actor throws items off the roof of buildings or high places with the intention of harming other people (COV Section 18.2-51.3).
If a person shoots, stabs, cuts, or harms another person without any regard to their safety and the actor had the intent to kill, main, disable or disfigure the other party, the court may be able to find the actor guilty of a Class 3 felony. If the act was not malicious, but merely unlawful, the court can find the actor guilty of a Class 6 felony (COV Section 18.2-51).
If the harmed individual included any of the following:
Then the court can sentence the actor to not less than 5 and up to 30 years in jail, and a fine of no more than $100,000. If the harm was not malicious, the minimum punishment is one year in jail (COV Section 18.2-51.1). If the harmed individual is permanently damaged from the assault or if they are pregnant, the court can find the actor guilty of a Class 2 felony.
If an actor harms another person during the commission of a felony, that act is a Class 6 felony. Using or displaying a weapon in order to threaten during the course of a felony is a separate crime, which the court can punish with three additional years of jail for a first offense. Therefore, it is essential for defendants to obtain the services an assault attorney in Virginia.
If the government has accused you or a loved one of assault, it may be in your best interest to reach out to an attorney to see how they may be able to guide you through the process.
Assault charges carry with them possible jail time and fines and may prevent a convicted person from being able to carry on a normal life after they have paid their dues to society. Do not face the prosecution alone. Consider calling a Virginia assault lawyer to see how they could help you during this stressful time.