Somerset Assault Lawyer
If you’re facing assault charges in or around Somerset County in Maryland, then contacting a Somerset assault lawyer is one of the best ways to get someone to stand behind you and support you when your day in court finally comes.
A Somerset assault lawyer can work hard to protect your record and your reputation, because a misdemeanor or felony conviction could easily damage your standing in the eyes of the law and in the eyes of your loved ones. As such, a criminal defense attorney in Somerset, Maryland will be dedicated to giving clients the best possible chance for charge reduction or dismissal, given the circumstances of the case.
Benefits of an Assault Attorney
It may be tempting to consider representing yourself or trusting your case with court-appointed counsel, especially if the charges seem relatively minor. Unfortunately, all legal issues are complicated. A Somerset assault lawyer understands the potential ramifications of even a misdemeanor criminal conviction and will work with you to mitigate the effects of your charges.
By seeking out an assault attorney in Somerset, you are making a decision to protect yourself and your future. A skilled lawyer will be able to investigate the events leading up to your charges (including witnesses and all available evidence) and design a defense strategy suited to your personal needs and circumstances.
Call our firm today to learn more about how we can help you.
Maryland Assault Laws
According to Maryland Code Section 3-201, assault is the following:
- Assault and battery
However, assault is never explicitly defined in the Maryland Code. Instead, the courts, have been left to flesh out what assault really means. The common law, or the law created by the courts, generally defines assault as doing or even merely attempting to do serious bodily injury to someone else.
The Penalties for First and Second Degree Assault
Maryland has two different levels of assault: first degree assault and second degree assault.
First Degree Assault
According to Section 3-202, first degree assault is either attempting to do or intentionally doing serious bodily injury to someone else. It also takes into account assault by the use of a firearm. There are many types of firearms mentioned in the law including but not limited to the following:
- A handgun
- A pistol or an assault pistol
- A rifle or a short-barreled rifle
- A shotgun or a short-barreled shotgun
- An antique firearm
- A machine gun
In addition, you can still be charged with first degree assault if you merely attempt to do serious bodily injury to someone else. This means that you don’t have to have hurt or even touched someone else to be charged with and convicted of first degree assault.
First degree assault is a felony punishable by a maximum of 25 years in prison. It is also defined as a Crime Of Violence under Maryland law, which means that if sentenced, a defendant must serve fifty percent (50%) of the sentence before being eligible for parole.
Second Degree Assault
According to Section 3-203, second degree assault is unlawful physical contact with another or intentionally placing another person in fear of imminent physical contact. The simple act of touching another person without their permission can constitute an assault, and certainly an allegation of pushing or shoving another person can be defined as assault.
While second degree assault is a misdemeanor, it is punishable by a maximum of 10 years in prison or a maximum fine of $2,500. However, a judge can also decide to hand down both a prison sentence and a fine.
Second degree assault is not a misdemeanor but a felony when a law enforcement officer, parole agent or probation agent was the target of the assault and the person who assaulted them knew or merely had reason to know their position of employment. Under Section 3-201, correctional officers are also included.
Second degree assault at the felony level is punishable by a maximum of 10 years in prison and a maximum fine of $5,000 or both.
Call a Somerset Assault Lawyer Today
There’s no need to face misdemeanor or felony assault charges alone. Call our firm to speak with a Somerset assault attorney who can inform you of your options and help you deal with these charges as quickly and effectively as possible.