Have you been charged with assault in Lexington, Kentucky? If so, our Lexington assault defense lawyers at Suhre & Associates, LLC, can help you fight the charges and get them dropped or reduced. Call our attorneys in Lexington at (859) 569-4014 to speak with our criminal defense team. Your first consultation is absolutely free.
An assault conviction can negatively affect the rest of your life, and you may be understandably concerned about what this will mean for your future. Depending on the circumstances of your case, assault convictions can carry severe penalties and fines.
How Our Lexington Criminal Defense Lawyers Can Help You Fight Assault Charges
The state of Kentucky takes assault charges seriously, and so should you. You need a strong and experienced Lexington criminal defense attorney on your side. That’s why Suhre & Associates, LLC, in Fayette County should be your first call.
At Suhre & Associates, LLC, our attorneys are relentless in fighting for you. Our firm benefits from the expertise of a former police officer, former public defenders, and a former prosecutor. This means that we have decades of combined experience on both sides of the law, which can offer you a huge advantage as you fight the assault charges.
When you hire us, we will:
- Investigate the facts to thoroughly understand the circumstances surrounding the incident, including speaking to eyewitnesses, examining the scene of the crime, and assessing your mental state.
- Review your arrest to ensure everything was done by the book
- Offer legal advice and design a strategic legal defense to help you beat the charges
- Engage experts such as medical professionals and weapons experts to testify on your behalf
- Negotiate with the prosecution to drop your charges or get them reduced
- Represent you in court if the prosecution does not offer a fair deal
We are experienced in criminal law and work hard to get you the best outcome possible. The prosecution does not intimidate us, so we are aggressive in negotiating for your freedom. We are also here to provide moral support and reassurance as you deal with the fear and frustration of these charges.
Contact our Lexington criminal defense law firm for free today to learn how we can help you. Our understanding and compassionate criminal defense lawyers have years of experience and are ready to defend you.
What Constitutes Assault?
Assault is a term that covers a wide range of conduct. In Kentucky, the crime of assault encompasses both “assault” and “battery.” The Bluegrass State considers assault as the act of intentionally or wantonly causing physical harm to another individual. In some cases, the mere attempt to cause such harm can be considered assault.
Wanton conduct means you have acted with disregard for the level of risk that you will cause harm. If ignoring such a risk would be significantly different from what would be considered reasonable, then it constitutes wanton conduct.
What Are the Penalties For an Assault Charge in Lexington, Kentucky?
For purposes of charges and penalties, criminal assault is divided into four categories based on the severity of the injury, as well as whether or not a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument was used. This categorization determines the penalties, including fines and/or prison time, that you will likely receive.
As per the Kentucky Penal Code, the law defines a deadly weapon as being any of the following:
- Billy club
- Weapon of mass destruction
- Any dischargeable weapon that could result in death
- Knife (except for hunting or pocket knives)
- Shuriken (death stars)
- Plastic or metal knuckles
A dangerous instrument is defined as any instrument that causes a serious physical injury or is capable of causing death or serious physical injury.
If you intentionally or wantonly cause injury to another, it is considered fourth-degree assault. If you happened to use a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument in the assault, just the fact that you were reckless will suffice, even if you did not intend any harm.
This level of assault is a Class A misdemeanor. If you are convicted of this criminal offense, you could get fined up to $500 and 12 months of jail time.
If you are convicted of fourth-degree assault multiple times, and the relationship between you and the person you harm is that of a family member or one-half of an unmarried couple, then you can be charged a fine of $1,000 to $10,000 dollars. The charges in such a situation will be increased to Class D felony, which means spending from one to five years in prison.
Assults committed in the context of domestic violence can lead to severe consequences.
If an assault involves a government worker who is performing job-related duties, you’ll face charges for assault in the third degree.
So, this could include assaults against:
- A state, county, city, or federal peace officer
- A detention facility employee
- State residential treatment facility employee
- Employee of state staff secure facility for residential treatment, providing juvenile detention or care
- Social worker at the Department for Community Based Services if the incident happens on the job
- Paid or volunteer emergency medical services personnel if an incident happens on the job
- Member of an organized fire department, whether paid or volunteer, if on the job
- Personnel affiliated with rescue squads of the Division of Emergency Management of the Department of Military Affairs if on the job
- Probation and parole officer
- Transportation officer while the transportation officer is performing job-related duties
- Public or private school employee, bus driver, or any other school employee
- Peace officer, especially if the perpetrator causes the officer to come into contact with bodily fluids.
In Kentucky, third degree assault is a Class D Felony, punishable by between one and five years in prison.
Second-degree assault occurs when a person:
- Intentionally causes serious physical injury to another
- Intentionally causes physical injury to another while using a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument, or
- Wantonly causes serious physical injury to another by means of a deadly instrument or dangerous weapon.
Second-degree assault is a Class C felony, punishable by between 5 and 10 years in a Kentucky state prison.
Assault in the first degree is the most serious assault charge in the state of Kentucky. To be charged with first-degree assault, the act must have caused serious bodily harm with a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument.
Or, under circumstances of extreme indifference to the value of human life, the assault was wanton and created a grave risk of death to another and caused serious physical injury.
As a Class B felony charge, a first-degree assault conviction could result in a prison term of 10 to 20 years and up to a $10,000 fine.
How Can You Defend Yourself If You Are Facing Assault Charges?
When you’re faced with an assault charge in Lexington, KY, our experienced criminal defense lawyers are prepared to exhaust all potential strategies for your defense.
Sometimes asserting an “affirmative defense” is the best way to defeat criminal charges for assault. This involves admitting that you technically violated the law, but offers a legal justification for your actions. For example, assault is permissible where:
- The purpose is to protect against rape or sexual assault
- Defendant fears his or her life is in danger
- The purpose is to protect against serious personal injury
- The defendant was confronted by a kidnapper
The law makes it clear that it is justifiable to commit assault to protect yourself if you feel you are in danger. We will fight to get these charges dropped if you were in a situation where assault was your only choice due to self-defense.
Other Defenses to Assault
Of course, there are other ways to fight criminal assault charges in Lexington. This might include arguing:
- Insufficient evidence to satisfy burden of proof
- You’ve been falsely accused or mistakenly identified
- Your arrest was unlawful
- You were the victim of an illegal search and seizure
- Your rights were never read to you, so your statements to the police are inadmissible
You can count on our defense team to analyze your situation carefully and identify the best options for your specific situation. We’ll pursue any defense that might benefit you and help to keep your future safe.
Call Our Lexington Assault Defense Lawyers Today
An assault conviction can have a disastrous impact on your life and future. Our Lexington assault defense lawyers at Suhre & Associates, LLC, have represented clients in the same situation. We understand what you are going through because we have seen it many times.
Regardless of why this happened, we will do everything we can to get you the best possible result that will have the least impact on you. Your life and future are too important to trust to just any law firm. Choose an accomplished firm with a reputation for winning criminal cases like yours.
If there is a way to get you out of this situation, we will get the job done. We offer our clients the strongest possible representation and take a team approach to your defense. We consult with you throughout and make no major decisions without your approval.
Call our Lexington, KY, law office at Suhre & Associates, LLC, today to arrange a free consultation to speak with our criminal defense team.