The main repercussion for an assault conviction is the possibility of serving time behind bars. When someone is arrested because another accused them of being violent or threatening harm, pure panic may flood their mind as they imagine having to serve a prison sentence. Right after the arrest and booking, it is in the best interest of the accused to speak with an attorney for more information and help with implementing a defense strategy.
What other repercussions may I face for an assault conviction?
Jail isn’t the only concern that the accused must worry about. There are other consequences that may not feel as heavy in the short-term, but can follow them for many years to come. For example, a person who is convicted of an assault crime on the felony level will have this on their record permanently.
As you can imagine, this may or may not go over well with future employers who do criminal background checks. Employers may be very reluctant to hire a person who could become a safety risk for coworkers and customers. It is also possible that a potential landlord will choose to deny someone who has been categorized of having a violent nature. When it comes to careers, finding a home to rent or purchase, and learning opportunities, having a criminal background can be a huge hindrance.
What defense strategies may my attorney suggest using?
After consulting with a criminal defense attorney, he or she may advise using a defense strategy in hopes of getting your charge at least minimized, if not dropped entirely. Depending on the circumstances of the incident, getting the assault charge dropped may not be possible. If this is the case, then your attorney will do what he or she can, to see that you avoid the most severe punishments. Here are examples of defense strategies your attorney may want to use:
- Self Defense: claiming self defense in the assault case may be suitable if the defendant agrees that he or she did the action, but that is was justified since the plaintiff had been seriously threatening in the moments leading up to.
- Defending Others: if the defendant was protecting another person, then the defense of others may be an appropriate strategy. Your attorney can work to show that the accused was responding in a reasonable way based on how the plaintiff was acting towards someone else.
- Failure to Meet Burden: the prosecutor has the burden to show that the defendant had committed every element of the assault crime, beyond a reasonable doubt. The jury may find the defendant not guilty if the prosecutor is unable to do so.
- Alibi: if the plaintiff is lying about the assault accusation, a strong defense can be to show that you were somewhere else entirely when this supposed interaction had occurred. It is possible that the plaintiff had misidentified the defendant, and the true offender of the crime is someone else.