Being charged with any crime can make life difficult, but an assault charge can really complicate your life for years. Even minor assault charges can lead to jail time and monetary penalties. The best way to beat an assault charge is to secure a knowledgeable and experienced attorney to be by your side from the beginning.
At the SMA Law Group, we understand the seriousness of these charges and how they can affect you. We will investigate the charges against you so we can work towards getting them reduced or dismissed altogether. When you need a Washington County assault charges attorney, call us today.
What Are The Charges?
There is no single charge of assault in Pennsylvania. A person can face a range of assault charges and the penalties range from misdemeanor to felony charges. Today, we want to give a brief overview of assault charges and their penalties. Please know that this is not in depth and you should always speak with a qualified attorney when making decisions about your particular case.
First, we need you to understand that there are two categories of assault charges in Pennsylvania: simple assault and aggravated assault. For each type, a prosecutor must show that certain elements are present beyond a reasonable doubt.
For simple assault involved intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly inflicting bodily injury on another person or attempting to do so. This can include attempts to use physical menace to intimidate another person with serious bodily harm.
For aggravated assault, prosecutors must show that a defendant showed an extreme indifference to human life. A defendant can face aggravated assault if accused of causing or placing a person in fear of serious bodily injury or the victim is a public safety official or a teacher while that person is performing their job.
Simple assault charges range in penalties. For a general simple assault, the charge is a misdemeanor 2 classification and a person can face two years in prison. For a simple assault charge involving fighting (mutual consent), the charge is classified as Misdemeanor 3 with up to one year in prison. A simple assault against a minor is classified as a Misdemeanor 1 with penalties of up to 5 years in prison.
Aggravated assaults are more serious. Both general aggravated assault and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon are classified as Felony 2 crimes and come with up to 10 years in prison. Aggravated assault with extreme indifference or against a public official is a Felony 1 charge and a person can face up to 20 years in prison.