Howard County Assault Lawyer
Facing assault or domestic violence charges in Howard County? Call a Howard County assault lawyer with our firm today to begin exploring your defense options. We can conduct a thorough investigation and build a personalized defense on your behalf.
With different types of assault charges and varying degrees of punishment, assault charges in Maryland can be overwhelming or confusing to those who are charged. For this reason it’s important that if you are accused or investigated for any type of assault that you contact a Howard County assault attorney as soon as possible. An assault lawyer in Howard County will be able to give you specifics on the type of charge you face, and what consequences you may be looking at. A criminal defense attorney in Howard County assault lawyer will be able to advocate on your behalf and make sure your rights are protected throughout the entirety of the legal process, so call today.
Assault Charges in Howard County
The definitions of various terms used throughout Maryland’s criminal codes regarding assault and related crimes are covered by Maryland Code Section 3-201. According to this code, assault is defined as the crime of assault, battery, and assault and battery. This can include an action you take with the intention of harming another, even if no harm results. A Howard County assault lawyer can go into greater detail about the distinctions between different assault charges, but the following is a basic breakdown that can help you to begin understanding how the law works.
Assault is broken down in two degrees, with first-degree assault being a felony, and second-degree assault is either a misdemeanor or a felony (depending on whether the individual charged with the crime assaulted a law enforcement officer) (Sections 3-202(b) and 3-203(b)).
The degree of assault charged and the seriousness of the offense for sentencing purposes will often turn on whether the assault caused or threatened “serious physical injury,” which is defined as any physical injury that is so serious that it puts the victim at substantial risk of death, or causes permanent or serious, lingering disfigurement, impaired function of any body part, or loss of function in any body part (Section 3-201(d)).
There are two forms of first-degree assault:
- By causing (or attempting to cause) serious physical injury
- By committing an assault with a firearm
A person is guilty of first-degree assault if he or she
- causes or attempts to cause
- serious physical injury to another person [Section 3-202(a)(1)]
A person is also guilty of first-degree assault if he or she
- commits an assault
- with a firearm of any kind
When a firearm is used, a first-degree assault is committed when the accused criminal aggressor creates an apprehension of imminent harmful contact in the mind of the victim, even if the accused never actually touches or harms the victim (Section 3-202(a)(2)).
Second-degree assault covers every other form of assault that does not fall under first-degree assault. Specifically, any assault not committed with a firearm, and any assault where the accused does not intentionally cause (or attempt to cause) serious physical injury to the victim.
Consequences of an Assault Conviction
If you are convicted of an assault crime, contacting a Howard County assault lawyer is important as your sentence may include incarceration, a fine, and probation. Whether you are sent to jail depends largely on the seriousness of the crime of which you are convicted and your prior criminal record.
In addition to a jail or prison term, conviction for assault results in a permanent criminal record that is obtainable by employers, potential employers, potential landlords, licensing agencies, and anyone who cares to look and see whether you have ever been convicted of a crime. Your ability to obtain or keep a security clearance will also be jeopardized by a criminal conviction. Non-citizens risk deportation and jeopardize the renewal of visas to remain in the country and the ability to re-enter the country or to obtain citizenship.
Where bodily injury or other expenses to the victim resulted, the court will normally order restitution.
Call a Howard County Assault Lawyer Today
If you are accused of assault in Howard County, or anywhere in Maryland, you have rights and are entitled to a vigorous defense. Our experienced Maryland assault attorneys are prepared to secure and protect your rights and provide the representation you deserve. Call our Howard County assault lawyers today.