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Providing Criminal Defense Representation in Missouri Assault Case
Assault charges can encompass several factors and occur in deviating degrees. Just like other felonies, assault charges can follow you for the rest of your life. Once you face these charges, you will always hold the stigma of a violent, harmful person and unable to control their anger.
If you or a loved one is under arrest on assault charges, a St. Louis criminal defense attorney offers your best option to minimize your penalty or avoid conviction.
In Missouri, Assault can be a felony or a misdemeanor. It depends on multiple factors such as the amount of physical injury, the type of victim, and the defendant’s mental state.
The following are the classifications of assault:
- Assault in the 1st Degree
- Assault in the 2nd Degree
- Assault in the 3rd Degree
- Assault in the 4th Degree
What Constitutes Assault in Missouri?
According to the statutes of Missouri R.SMo. 565.050, “Assault can constitute in the first degree if a person attempts to kill knowingly or cause serious physical injury to another person.”
Assault can involve more than just fighting; charges can be in many different ways, such as shooting at someone, stabbing someone, punching someone, kicking someone, slapping someone, and many more.
What You Need to Know About Assault in Missouri
An assault is a serious criminal offense in Missouri and is punished severely, even if the victim suffered no physical injury or no physical contact actually occurred.
Contact between the alleged perpetrator and the victim does not have to occur. The mere threat of physical contact is enough for a conviction.
However, to be convicted of assault, the prosecutor has to prove that you knowingly caused or attempted to cause physical harm to the victim, or that you did so recklessly.
As mentioned above, an assault in Missouri can be a misdemeanor or felony offense. A felony assault charge usually involves the use of a firearm or deadly weapon, or serious physical injury to the alleged victim.
The Consequences of an Assault Conviction
The consequences of an assault conviction can include:
- Incarceration in a jail or state prison
- A restraining order
- Probation or parole
- Anger management classes
- The requirement to pay restitution to the victim of the crime
The penalties you will receive will be even harsher if the assault was perpetrated against one of an extensive list of special victims, including:
- Police officers
- Parole officers
- Probation officers
- Emergency medical technicians
- Elderly and disabled people
- Highway workers
- Cable and utility workers
Similarly, your penalties will be enhanced if the assault involves using a firearm, gang activity, or domestic violence.
Moreover, the assault victim may pursue a civil claim against you to recover monetary compensation for damages like medical expenses, lost wages and income, pain and suffering, emotional distress, scarring and disfigurement, and loss of enjoyment of life.
Defenses to an Assault Charge in St. Louis
The most common defense to an assault charge is self-defense, meaning that someone other than you was the initial aggressor. In the State of Missouri, you have the right to stand your ground.
Another very common defense to an assault charge is misidentification, meaning that it wasn’t you who caused the harm. A good attorney knows that misidentification is one of the critical issues in an assault case, and there are a number of reasons for this.
First, an assault case often involves two parties that did not know each other and had not met each other until the incident occurred. As such, the victim’s memory of what the alleged perpetrator actually looked like can be very shaky.
Many times, an assault case involves more than just two people, and when there are a number of people involved in a fight or some sort of physical altercation, it can sometimes be really hard or impossible to determine who actually landed the blow that caused the harm.
Moreover, suppose the victim lost consciousness as a result of the altercation. When this is the case, the victim may not be able to accurately remember or identify who actually landed the blow that caused the harm.
That is why you might want to hire an attorney to conduct their own investigation, using their own resources and investigative team to review your case and explore possible defenses.
If you are arrested for assault in St. Louis, exercise your right to remain silent. Then contact an experienced St. Louis assault attorney to represent you
Let Our Experienced St. Louis Assault Attorneys Help You
Our St Louis assault lawyers understand that facing any criminal charges can be an uncomfortable and life-changing experience.
Our law firm goal is to provide transparency and confidence to focus on your case. You can rely on our criminal defense team to provide comprehensive counsel through every step of your case in St. Louis, MO.
If you were recently charged with assault or questioned on assault charges, please contact us immediately. We can explain the possible defense available to you and explain what we can do to keep you out of jail. We fight aggressively to protect your liberty.
Call a St. Louis assault lawyer from our firm today for a free consultation.