Maryland Assault On An Officer Lawyer
The state of Maryland views assault on an officer as a second-degree assault; the crime involves harmful or offensive unconsented contact or the act of causing an individual apprehension or fear of said contact. The assault of an ambulance technician, hospital staff, or firefighter that is providing aid is also counted as an assault on an officer, and an individual that is charged with this crime will undoubtedly face very harsh penalties. As a result, anyone who has been charged or accused of assaulting an officer should consult with an experienced Maryland assault on an officer lawyer as soon as possible to begin mitigating the damage and building a defense. An experienced assault defense attorney can help in preparing the individual for trial and ensuring that law enforcement never violated their rights throughout the arrest process.
Elements of Assault on an Officer Charges
A prosecutor will need to prove that the individual who has been charged has had harmful or offensive, unconsented contact with an officer. A prosecutor will also aim to prove that if there was no contact, the individual caused a reasonable amount of fear within the mind of the officer while acting within the scope of their duty. To achieve this, a prosecutor will use evidence to strengthen their case during trial, such as:
- Police body camera footage
- Video surveillance
- Testimony of the officer
- Witness statements
- Any phone calls for backup or assistance made by the police officer
- Medical records
Certain pieces of evidence can affect an APO case significantly; the use of police body cameras play a major role in whether or not someone is convicted. Video evidence is the best way to convey to a judge or a jury what happened. There is no room for “he said, she said” when the actual act or the alleged acts are presented clearly to the courtroom with audio and visual. Ultimately, the ability of the court to possess tangible evidence can both hurt, as well as help.
It will be vital that an individual who has been charged has a knowledgeable Maryland assault on an officer lawyer on their side who can speak on their behalf and defend their case in the event that a video alters the courtrooms perception of their client.
In most cases, an assault on an officer charge is brought against an individual in situations where a law enforcement officer attempts to arrest them and they resist with force. If someone physically attacks an officer, whether it be with their hands or with an object or they choose to fight back while being apprehended, they will be charged accordingly. Assault is quite serious, especially when the victim is an officer, and it carries some serious penalties, including:
- 10 years’ incarceration as a secondary assault
- A $5,000 fine
- A felony charge that will appear on someone’s record
An assault on an officer lawyer in Maryland that has a clear understanding of Maryland laws, as well as a great deal of experience defending clients in assault cases, is crucial when someone is facing the harsh penalties that accompany that crime.
Assaulting A Police Officer vs. Assaulting A Lay Person
There are significant differences between an assault on a police officer and an assault on a lay person, which include:
- An increased potential for there to be a felony charge.
- An increased likelihood of there being a fine.
- The assault has taken place against a police officer.
A police officer and others, such as firefighters and medical physicians, are in a position of trust and responsibility. They are responsible for the public’s wellbeing and safety. Unlike a regular citizen who is not required to take action, a police officer is required to administer aid and put themselves in dangerous situations. With this in mind, the legal system strives to ensure that the individuals whose goal is to protect, serve, and to provide aid are protected well.
Building a Defense
When dealing with an assault on an officer case, there are certain instances where unwanted contact occurs intentionally. More often than not, there is an inadvertent type of contact that is made; an individual will resist arrest rather than assault an officer. A Maryland assault on an officer attorney will always aim to differentiate between resisting arrest, which is a much lesser offense, and an actual assault.