Violent crimes like assault are very serious matters. When you are facing criminal charges like this in New Jersey, you have every right to be nervous of the potential outcomes. As a defense attorney who has defended numerous charges like this, I know what you are up against.Charged with a crime in New Jersey? Please call (800) 673-3656
An accusation of a criminal assault charge can range from relatively minor to very violent. And it is a fact that you don’t actually have to hurt anyone to be convicted of assault.
If a criminal court of law, the prosecution must present to the court enough evidence to convince the jury that you are guilty “beyond a reasonable doubt”. It’s my job to ensure they don’t succeed.
Under New Jersey law, you can be charged with two types of basic assault. The two basic types of assault are simple assault and aggravated assault.
These do not include crimes of sexual assault. For more information on those, see my sex crimes page.
Simple Assault Laws & Penalties in New Jersey
Simple assault is the less serious of the two assault offenses. You may be charged with this offense if the prosecution has probable cause to believe that you did any one of the following:
- Purposely, knowingly, or recklessly caused or attempted to cause bodily injury to another,
- Negligently (unintentionally) cause injury to another with a deadly weapon, or
- Attempted to put someone in fear of imminent serious bodily injury.
Yes, this means you can be charged with assault without touching anyone.
Simple assault is typically considered a disorderly persons offense which carries a potential 6 month jail sentence. However, if the assault involves a fight in which both parties mutually entered, the charge may be a petty disorderly offense.
Aggravated Assault Laws & Penalties
Far more serious is the crime of aggravated assault. There are numerous ways in which this offense can be committed. You may be charged with this if the prosecution has probable cause to believe you:
- Cause or attempted to cause serious bodily injury to another
- Purposely or knowingly caused or attempted to cause bodily injury to another with a deadly weapon,
- Recklessly caused bodily injury to another with a deadly weapon,
- Pointed a firearm in the direction of another showing extreme indifference to human life, or
- If you commit a simple assault on a protected person (law enforcement, emergency services worker, judge, operator of public transportation, or utility employee acting in their job.
Aggravated assault can be charged as a crime of the fourth degree or up to a crime of the second degree. The charge you face depends on the circumstances of your offense and the result of the action. If the alleged victim was actually injured, your charges and potential penalty will be much higher.
This means, for a charge of aggravated assault, you could face as much as 10 years in prison.
Ref: NJ Stat. §2C: 12-1
Any assault charges are nothing to be taken lightly. Anytime your freedom is on the line, you should be confident in your choice of defense attorney.
Contact my office today to get a free legal consultation. I am interested in hearing the details about your case to better determine how I can help you. Because each case has subtle differences I will ask a lot of questions to ensure we can proceed with the best course of action. I encourage you to ask me questions too.
Call today so we can get started. I will be able to give you some valuable legal advice.
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