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If you are facing allegations of assault, you should contact an experienced assault lawyer as soon as possible. Midland assault penalties can be severe, and prosecutors aggressively pursue these charges. A seasoned defense attorney could fight for a lower sentence or acquittal.
Penalties for Assault in Midland
The penalties associated with assault range from a Class C misdemeanor up to a first-degree felony. An experienced defense attorney can be critical in an assault case because they know the difference between these two extremes and will look at the specific facts of the situation.
Someone accused of assault does not want a Class C misdemeanor to be treated as a first-degree felony because there is an enormous difference in the penalties. One should not have to plead to a felony when maybe, at worst, they could be convicted of a Class C misdemeanor and pay a $500 fine.
Assault charges can lead to enhanced Midland assault penalties based on who the assault allegedly happened to. A class C misdemeanor assault charge is a basic assault, where an individual caused some immediate apprehension to someone, threatened someone with immediate bodily harm, or made some unwanted contact.
There are two situations in which basic assault could be bumped up from a class C to a class A or class B. If an individual made unwanted contact against an elderly individual or disabled person, that will bump the Class C up to a class A misdemeanor, which could result in one year in county jail and up to a $4,000 fine.
Another thing to consider is if the individual had done previous assault convictions. For example, if an individual has a prior class A misdemeanor conviction for assaulting a significant other, and then the individual is arrested again, the domestic assault gets bumped up to a felony.
Prosecuting an Assault Charge
To obtain a conviction against a person facing assault charges, Midland prosecution has to meet all the elements of whatever offense they are saying the individual has committed. For example, if they accuse someone of intentionally making unwanted contact, they must prove that contact occurred and that the contact was intentional.
Suppose an individual was on a bus which made a sudden stop, and they fell into another person who then claims the individual made unwanted contact. In that case, the prosecution must prove that the individual intentionally or knowingly caused the contact. The bus stopping scenario would be difficult to prove because the accused individual has a reasonable defense.
Diversion Programs and Alternative Sentencing
Not everyone convicted of assault needs to face the most severe Midland assault penalties. Sometimes there are programs that might give an individual a second chance in order to earn their way out of the mess they have gotten into. This is especially true for some younger people. If an individual is 18 or 19 years old and makes a mistake, it can be harsh if they get a conviction and the person’s record is then marred for the rest of their life.
Sometimes lawyers are able to get clients into programs where essentially they prove that they are not a bad person, and they get a second chance. This depends on the specific circumstances of the case.
Just because a person is a first-time offender without other priors does not mean they are going to get these programs. A lawyer has to show why the person deserves it, which is why an individual will want to hire an experienced attorney.
Contacting a Criminal Defense Attorney
A person charged with assault in Midland should contact an assault lawyer immediately. Ideally, one should have an attorney present during any contact with law enforcement. Your best chance of avoiding the most severe Midland assault penalties is to hire a skilled attorney.