What Is Assault?
“Assault” refers to an illegal act with the intent to injure someone. While assault and battery often occur together, they are two separate crimes in California. For example, swinging a bat at someone could be considered assault. However, a battery charge requires physical contact, such as hitting the person with a bat on purpose.
While assault may not seem serious, you could still face felony charges and time in prison. Given the gravity of the possible consequences at hand, it’s crucial to hire a knowledgeable defense lawyer without delay. Our assault lawyers have over 40 years of experience defending clients in West Covina, and we’ll fight to keep you out of jail. Receive your free consultation by calling us at (877) 466-5245.
What The Prosecution Must Prove | Elements of Assault
The West Covina prosecutor must prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. An assault crime includes the following elements:
- Your actions could have resulted in physical contact with the alleged victim.
- You intentionally acted in a threatening, violent, or dangerous manner.
- When you acted, you had the ability to apply force.
Note: You could face charges of assault without ever injuring or intending to injure the victim. It’s very easy for someone to misunderstand your intent, and once charged, saying or doing the wrong thing can lead to a conviction.
Types of Assault In West Covina
West Covina prosecutors take assault crimes seriously and pursue conviction to prevent future violence. In West Covina, you could face the following assault charges:
- PC 240 – Assault
- PC 241- Assault Against a Peace Officer
- PC 245 – Aggravated Assault
Because the laws regarding assault are complex, you need a skilled assault lawyer to help you navigate your case. We’ll challenge the prosecution with solid defense strategies to help you stay out of jail. With a simple phone call, you can find out how our defense attorneys can help you avoid conviction. Call Wallin & Klarich today to receive your free consultation.
Assault Sentencing | Possible Consequences
An assault conviction can have lasting consequences affecting every area of your life. Plus, the court can sentence you to increased legal penalties if your case involves aggravating factors or previous convictions. To give you a better idea of what you face, we’ve summarized the penalties for assault below.
Assault | PC 240
As outlined under California Penal Code 240, simple assault is a misdemeanor crime and carries the following penalties in West Covina:
- Maximum six-month jail sentence
- Maximum fine of $1,000 fine
- Misdemeanor probation
- Batterer’s program
- Community service
Assault Against A Peace Officer | PC 241
Assaulting a protected official can significantly increase your sentence. Some individuals protected under California law include police, peace officers, firefighters, paramedics, nurses, doctors, and public safety officials. Under California Penal Code 241, the penalties for assaulting a peace officer in West Covina include:
- One-year jail sentence
- Maximum fine of $2,000
- Community service
Assault With A Deadly Weapon | PC 245
Assault with a deadly weapon is also called “aggravated assault.” This crime carries harsh penalties because of the danger posed to the public and the potential for death. Since it’s a “wobbler” offense, the prosecution will decide whether to file misdemeanor or felony charges against you. However, they favor felony charges in most cases, especially if you admit to using a deadly weapon, have prior convictions, or the alleged victim suffered severe injuries.
According to California Penal Code 245, the penalties for assault with a deadly weapon can include:
- Prison for two, three, or four years (Felony)
- One year in county jail (Misdemeanor)
- A maximum fine of $10,000
- Strike – Under California’s Three Strikes Law, you could receive a strike on your record. In addition, the court can order increased penalties to 25 years to life in prison if you have two strike convictions on your record.
- PC 245(a)(2) – For using a firearm during the assault, you face 6 months in jail to 12 years in state prison, depending on the type of gun used.
- VC 13351.5(a) – For aggravated assaults involving a car as a weapon, the DMV can permanently revoke your license.
Professional and Personal Consequences
Spending time in jail or prison is not what you planned for your future. However, a conviction could result in just that. Imagine being separated from your family. This time apart can be traumatic for you and your loved ones. Once you serve time, you may still struggle with finding a decent job. Employers may label you as violent and similar situations may arise when applying for housing. However, you don’t have to accept this as fate. With skilled legal representation, you can fight assault charges.
Our experienced attorneys have helped many clients get their assault charges dropped in West Covina. We also understand how unexpected this situation is for you. That’s why we offer reasonable rates for our service and payment options so you can afford a skilled criminal defense lawyer. Let’s start building your defense strategy. Call our office today, toll-free at (877) 466-5245 to receive a free consultation!
Fight Back | Possible Defenses Against Assault Charges
Your future depends on the outcome of this case. Many people make the mistake of thinking they can face criminal charges alone. Then, their court date arrives, and the fear sets in. However, you don’t have to face a trial alone, and even better, you can act now to increase your chances of winning. Hiring one of our experienced assault lawyers ensures solid legal representation when you need it most. Wallin & Klarich has over 40 years of experience defending clients facing time behind bars due to assault charges in West Covina. We have the skill necessary to construct a powerful strategy and defend you in court. Just take a look at our testimonials. Some of the legal defenses we’ve presented in past assault cases include but are not limited to:
“Self-defense” or “defense of others” is a right under California law. However, you must believe there’s an immediate threat of injury or death, and you can only use reasonable force. Proving these two factors can prove challenging for some lawyers. But our attorneys have successfully argued this defense in many cases, and we understand the boundaries of the law.
If “self-defense” or “defense of others” resulted in an assault case in West Covina, call our office to begin working toward a solid legal strategy today!
Lack Of Intent
If an accident or a misunderstanding led to your assault charge, lack of intent might be the best strategy. The prosecution must prove you intentionally committed the alleged act for a conviction. It’s important to note that this doesn’t mean you intentionally hurt the victim. Here intent means you acted with the knowledge that doing so could cause harm or offend someone.
For example, you’re in a hurry and open your car door, almost hitting a coworker and causing him to fall. He thinks you did this on purpose and files a report. We’ll get straight to the facts supporting your story. You had no intent to harm your coworker, and you’ve never had issues with aggression or violence in the past. In a case like this example, we may even be able to get the charges dropped before trial.
The Credibility Defense
The prosecution’s case against you depends on the credibility of your accuser and any witnesses. If someone has falsely accused you of assault out of anger or spite, we can challenge their credibility and reveal the true motivation for filing a report. Our team will look for evidence such as texts or other witnesses to support our argument.
This approach can lead to a reduction or dismissal of your charges so that you can avoid jail time. Fight false accusations of assault by hiring a skilled defense attorney. Call Wallin & Klarich today to speak with our attorneys.
Hiring A Skilled Defense Attorney | How We Can Assist You
Serious accusations require a skilled and experienced defense attorney. With 40+ years of experience, Wallin & Klarich stands out among the crowd of West Covina criminal defense firms. Our attorneys specialize in defending clients accused of assault and understand the most effective defense strategies. You should consider many factors when choosing a criminal defense lawyer. However, four key characteristics set us apart, including:
- Loyal Advocates
- Skilled Negotiators
- Solid Record for 40+ Years
- Specialized Legal Knowledge
Your Loyal Advocates | The Wallin & Klarich Difference
Loyalty is hard to find. Unfortunately, many law firms treat clients like case numbers rather than real people. At Wallin & Klarich, we believe you deserve respect and dedication. But we don’t just say it; we show it through our devotion to your defense and our interactions with you. Our attorneys promptly address all your concerns because we never want you to feel dismissed or unheard. Rest assured, our communication with you will always be straightforward and genuine. With Wallin & Klarich at your side, you can walk into court confident that we have your best interests in mind. Moreover, we’ll be prepared to put up our strongest fight.
Skilled Negotiators | 40+ Years of Success
Wallin & Klarich has a history of success spanning 40+ years. We’ve obtained the best possible results in complex assault cases and helped our clients avoid spending time behind bars. Their stories stand as a testament to our skilled legal negotiation. But, more importantly, they renew our motivation to defend others falsely accused of assault in West Covina. Our passion for helping clients has not wavered in over four decades and counting. Discover how our skilled negotiators can help you fight false assault accusations in West Covina, CA. Contact us today at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 for a free consultation with a highly-skilled West Covina defense attorney.
When you need help, we will be here.