Defending yourself against assault charges

Assault is one of the more common crimes against a person, and while definitions can vary from state to state, it is often defined as an attempt to injure someone else. In some cases, this can also include threats or threatening behavior against another person.

Depending on the circumstances of a case, a defense against an assault charge will vary widely. However, there are a few defenses that are commonly used by assault defense lawyers

Self-defense – This is the most common defense used in an assault case. To use self-defense, someone accused of a crime must show:
• There was a threat of force or violence against them
• A real and perceived fear of harm existed
• They did not provoke or harm another person first
• There was no reasonable chance to escape or retreat from a situation

Defending others – This is very similar to self-defense, except that all of the standards that apply to self-defense apply to the defense of others.

Defending property – A person charged with assault may claim that they acted to defend their property from being invaded or illegally withheld. In some states, this is known as the Castle Doctrine, where a person has the right to defend their home, and it’s contents with a reasonable amount of force.

The severity of an assault will determine what fines and other penalties may be involved. If a person has a criminal history of assault or the crime rises to the level of aggravated assault or sexual assault, which are felonies, penalties can rise dramatically. In addition, assault or battery crimes committed on a police officer or firefighter also raise the nature of the penalty as well.

Dwane Cates Law Group proudly serves the cities of Phoenix, Scottsdale, Glendale, Tempe, Mesa and surrounding Arizona communities.