In the context of the law, assault can be confusing to comprehend and address. Without a proper understanding of the law, it can be difficult to know the difference between what constitutes an assault and what makes an assault offense more serious over another. As such, if you have been charged and arrested for an assault crime, it is extremely important to talk to an experienced assault attorney. An assault and battery attorney can assess your particular case and explain the type of assault you have been charged with and the accompanying penalties.
To understand assault fully, the key is to recognize that assault does not always or only consist of a physical attack. An assault on someone can be a verbal threat of harm. If a person threatens to harm or causes the fear of imminent bodily harm, that is still considered assault. Even if the person who was threatened did not suffer any physical harm, the verbal act in and of itself is enough to accuse someone of assault.
If you have been accused of assault, contact the Law Office of Jack O’Donnell, L.L.C. to schedule a free consultation with our assault and battery attorney in New Haven, CT.
Types Of Assault Offenses
Connecticut incorporates three types of assault degrees that range from Class A misdemeanors to Class B felonies. The charges on an assault will depend on whether there was physical contact and the use of a deadly weapon. Other factors and circumstances can also play into the charges and penalties. For instance, the charges can be increased based on the victim’s age and condition.
A third-degree assault is the least serious degree. It is classified as a Class A misdemeanor, while the other types of degrees are felonies. However, make no mistake. A third-degree assault charge is serious. It carries stringent penalties, including a fine of up to $2,000 and a maximum sentence of one year in prison. If a firearm was involved, there is a mandatory one-year prison term.
Third-degree assaults are defined as:
- Causing bodily harm with the intent to hurt a person;
- Causing serious injury to another person; or
- Using a deadly weapon to cause injury to another person
Once someone has been charged with a second-degree assault, they have entered into the felony class. Felonies are much more serious than misdemeanors. The punishment for a felony carries more weight since the consequences tend to be dire. A second-degree felony assault is a Class D. The penalties include a fine of up to $5,000 with a maximum of five years in prison. If a firearm was involved, there is also a one-year minimum prison term.
Second-degree assaults are defined as:
- Causing serious intentional harm to another person
- Causing serious intentional harm to another person with a non-firearm weapon
- Recklessly causing serious injury with a deadly weapon
- Drugging another person without their consent
If you have been charged with second-degree assault, it is critical that you enlist the legal assistance of an assault attorney.
A first-degree assault is the most serious type of assault offense. It is classified as a Class B felony. The penalties for a first-degree assault include a minimum of five years in prison with a maximum of 20 years. The accompanying fines can total up to $15,000.
First-degree assaults are defined as:
- Causing serious injury to another person using a deadly weapon or instrument;
- Causing serious injury to another person with the intent to permanently injure or disfigure;
- Acting with indifference to human life that causes serious injury to another person;
- Discharging a firearm with the intent to cause injury
Depending on the facts of the case and the severity of the assault, a first-degree charge can be elevated if there are aggravating factors. If you have been charged with a first-degree assault offense, it is imperative to recruit the expertise of an assault and battery attorney.
For a deeper understanding of the different types of assault and their accompanying charges, it is recommended to talk to an assault defense lawyer. You can search under lawyers for assault in New Haven, Connecticut for a list of top law firms that serve in this area, such as the Law Office of Jack O’Donnell, L.L.C.