Been Charged with Assault in Connecticut?
Assault can be any incident where physical harm is done to another person. However, there are varying degrees of assault, and if you are charged with the crime, you may be able to plead to a lesser charge or avoid sentencing if you understand its ramifications fully. Having a Stamford assault lawyer helping you can make a big difference.
Connecticut law divides assault charges into differing degrees, where variables will affect which one you are charged with. Third-degree assault, for example, is a Class A misdemeanor (with or without a weapon). It is punishable by up to a year in prison plus severe fines (usually around $2,000), plus costs. An assault case is more likely to be charged in the third degree if the person had intent to injure or acted recklessly (as opposed to intent to kill or use a weapon to cause permanent injury). The victim (or a third person) must be injured, but not necessarily severely.
Compare this to assault in the first degree. Someone will be charged with first-degree assault if they “intended to harm the person” and their victim was seriously injured or in certain other cases such as using a weapon to cause permanent injury. The sentence will be between 5 and 20 years in prison, as well as fines that can range up to $15,000, depending on the severity of the injuries caused. Generally, each degree of assault has its particular criteria, with only the intent and the actual injury (or lack thereof) being relatively uniform across the board.
While charges of assault for adults are serious, assault charges for juveniles are almost more so, because if the injury is serious enough, the case can be removed to adult court. Normally, when a juvenile commits a crime, it is handled by the juvenile court system, which is much more rehabilitative than punitive. Many juvenile offenders are diverted from jail sentences into pretrial diversion programs or placed on probation, and their records are expunged or sealed upon reaching their 18th birthday.
However, juveniles who commit Class A or B felonies (like first-degree assault) automatically have their cases transferred to adult court, wherein their sentence will be much more punitive, and it will be made public (unlike juvenile records). Juveniles who commit Class C or D felonies (such as second-degree assault) may have their cases transferred, though it is not guaranteed that this will happen. If your child has been charged with assault, it is in their best interest to enlist an attorney and see what can be done to keep them from that happening, as most judges in adult court will not be kind.
Call a Fairfield County Assault Attorney for Help
Assault so often occurs when someone simply loses control, or there are extenuating circumstances. If you or your child have been charged with assault, the Law Offices of Daniel P. Weiner has handled these cases for years and is happy to work with you on your case. Contact our passionate Stamford assault attorneys today to schedule a free consultation by calling 203-348-5846.