Criminal Assault in Tuscaloosa
Assault charges and convictions are very serious in the State of Alabama and can subject a criminal defendant to hefty fines and long periods of incarceration or probation. Moreover, if you and the alleged victim live under the same roof together, you could also be charged with domestic violence, which carries additional criminal penalties.
Assault charges in Alabama are very fact-specific, and an experienced Tuscaloosa assault lawyer can safeguard all of your legal rights while your criminal case is pending. Your qualified criminal defense attorney can evaluate the facts and circumstances of your criminal case and, help you formulate a good legal defense to your assault charge. Seek the services of a skilled legal advocate, and know that you are in good hands.Assault Charges Under Alabama Law
Alabama assault charges may be prosecuted as felonies or as misdemeanors, depending on the nature and circumstances of the offense, and whether or not a weapon was used in the alleged assault. Felonies are generally punishable by more than one year in jail, while misdemeanors are punishable by up to one year in jail, along with heavy fines and other penalties. Alabama prosecutes criminal assault charges in the first, second, and third-degrees.
A defendant may be charged with first-degree criminal assault if they cause serious physical injury to a person using a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument – and if they had the intent to cause serious bodily injury to another person. A person may also be charged with first-degree criminal assault if they commit the assault during the course of a dangerous crime, such as during a burglary, rape, arson, kidnapping, or robbery.
A defendant may be charged with second-degree criminal assault if they cause serious physical injury to another person with the intent to cause that serious physical injury – or if the defendant causes physical injury by means of a deadly weapon or a dangerous instrument.
A defendant may be charged with third-degree criminal assault if they intend to cause physical injury to another person and, in fact, cause that injury – or if they recklessly or negligently cause physical injury to another person.Defenses to Alabama Criminal Assault Charges
As with all crimes, Alabama law provides for various legal defenses to criminal assault charges. A Tuscaloosa assault lawyer may be able to help formulate good legal defenses to a pending assault charge. Some of the more common legal defenses to Alabama assault charges include the following:
- Mistaken Identity
- Self-defense (i.e. using force or a threat of force toward someone else for self-protection or self-preservation purposes)
- Defense of another
- Falsification of story by alleged victim (usually when the custody of a minor child or children is involved)
Assault convictions come with harsh penalties, and you need experienced legal representation throughout your criminal case. A Tuscaloosa assault lawyer can attempt to maximize your chances of obtaining a favorable result in your case, whether that be formulating a good legal defense(s) to your charge, obtaining a complete dismissal of your charge, obtaining a favorable plea deal with the prosecution, or obtaining a reduced penalty upon conviction. Call today.