Assault with a deadly weapon occurs when an individual assaults someone with a deadly weapon. Some jurisdictions consider force sufficient to cause serious bodily injury, perhaps just a black eye, as equivalent to a deadly weapon.
An assault with a deadly weapon occurs when an individual is put in fear of bodily harm. The harm doesn’t actually have to occur, but if it does, the charge may be changed to assault and battery, which means contact occurred even if no injury did. A deadly weapon can obviously include firearms and knives, but even normally innocent objects, such as a bottle, a pencil, a rock, and a car, can be considered deadly weapons if they have the ability to cause harm. Even using an unloaded gun, because it causes fear, may fall into this category. Hands and feet are not usually deadly weapons, but kicking or biting an individual may be sufficient for a charge of assault with a deadly weapon because kicking and biting may cause serious bodily injury.
An individual charged with having assaulted someone will often be charged with a felony, although depending on the weapon and the jurisdiction the charge may be a misdemeanor. Conviction of assault with a deadly weapon can result in probation of a few months to many years, fines ranging from anywhere between $500 and $1,000,000, and prison time of a few months to 25 years or more. If the state has a “3 strikes and you’re out” law, an assault with a deadly weapon conviction could even lead to life in prison.
A criminal lawyer experienced in defending against these charges can help you find the proper defense. There are many factors that need to be analyzed in order to put together the strongest defense. Some jurisdictions consider consent to be a defense, but many do not. A criminal attorney may recommend a defense of involuntary intoxication or insanity. Self defense or defense of another may also be claimed, but protecting property usually will not be acceptable since property is not considered as valuable as someone’s life. Prevention of a crime may give someone the right to assault another with a deadly weapon. A criminal lawyer may also claim lack of intent if the assault and battery occurred by accident. There are many possible defenses, and a trained assault with a deadly weapon attorney will be able to navigate you through the system and ensure that you are properly protected.
No matter what your situation, the risks are too great to try to protect yourself against an assault with a deadly weapon charge without a criminal lawyer. Contact us NOW for a free and confidential consultation.
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