Loudoun County Assault Attorney
By definition, assault and battery are two separate offenses which may or may not be charged together. For charges of assault to be applicable, there is no need of physical contact. The Virginia Criminal Code defines assault as an intentional act by one person that puts another in fear of imminent harmful or offensive contact. Commonly stated, this means that a threat of harm – whether physically or emotionally damaging – with the actual or perceived ability to follow through with such a threat is grounds for assault charges. If you are charged with assault, contact a Loudoun County assault lawyer today for a free consultation. For information on other criminal matters in Loudoun County, click here.
Loudoun Assault Lawyers Handle These Cases
Because the code’s definition of both assault and battery are somewhat vague, there is room for the subjective opinion of the alleged victim, law enforcement officers, or witnesses to misconstrue a confrontation or verbal exchange as something more sinister or criminal than what actually took place.
If you have been involved in an altercation that has led to charges of assault or assault and battery, it is important that you find an attorney familiar with the laws as they pertain to these charges. An experienced Loudoun assault lawyer will be familiar with cases involving assault and battery and related charges such as:
- Simple assault
- Aggravated assault
- Domestic assault
- Assault with a deadly weapon
- Assault on a law-enforcement officer, judge, or school security officer
- Sexual assault
- Assault and battery
Simple assault or simple assault & battery is considered a Class 1 misdemeanor, punishable by up to $2,500 in fines and a maximum of twelve months in jail. In order to reach a conviction, the prosecution must be able to prove not only the action or threat, but the intent behind it. If your Loudoun assault lawyers’ defense provides reasonable doubt regarding your intent to harm another individual, you may avoid a criminal conviction.
Certain factors present in an assault or assault and battery offense can elevate the charge to aggravated assault/assault and battery. In the case of hate crimes in which a victim is specifically chosen or targeted because of ethnicity, religious conviction, national origin, or similar characteristics, the assailant is guilty of a Class 6 felony, rather than a lesser charge as a misdemeanor. The penalty for this class of felony requires a minimum jail term of six months, according to Section 18.2-57 (B). This is also the case for assault on a judge, law-enforcement officer, correctional officer, firefighter, or similar emergency or government personnel, as addressed in Section 18.2-57 (C).
Other felonious assault conditions are:
- Assault during a robbery
- Reckless endangerment
- Malicious wounding
- Assault with a deadly weapon
- Domestic assault (on third or subsequent offense)
The more severe nature of these assault cases brings about more severe penalties. To minimize the damage you incur, it is important to obtain legal representation from a Loudoun County criminal defense attorney.
Domestic violence is most often alleged by a wife, husband, or offspring, but according to the code, § 16.1-228, domestic assault charges may come from others, such as an ex-spouse, parents or step-parents, siblings, in-laws, any person who lives with or has lived with the defendant within the past 12 months, any child of a resident or resident within the past 12 months, and many more.
Assault and Battery
For the charges to be for assault and battery, there must be a follow-through of a physical nature that actually harms another individual. The code of Virginia defines it as the intentional, non-consensual harmful or offensive contact by one person against another. This differs from assault in that damage is done, on some level. The battery may be a form of physical harm, but could also be considered battery if the interaction is purposefully hurtful to one’s emotional well-being, or if it is offensive in nature.
A Loudoun County Assault Lawyer Can Help
If you are facing charges for assault or assault and battery in Leesburg or anywhere else in Loudoun County, you need trusted legal counsel to guide you through the trial. Perhaps the alleged offense was a misunderstanding, perhaps the act for which you have been charged was consensual, perhaps the charges against you are a fabrication with roots in revenge. Whatever the case, through a free consultation with a Loudoun County assault lawyer, you can begin to develop a sure defense against those seeking to punish you.
Steve Duckett’s ample experience representing clients in such cases gives him the knowledge he needs to defend against prosecutors seeking the maximum penalty. With his dedicated representation, you may be acquitted of charges, have your case dismissed, or incur a lesser charge with lesser penalties. Call our office today for a free consultation.