An alleged victim does not have to be injured for an assault to occur. The definition of assault includes an attempt to create bodily injury and also includes an act that causes a substantial risk of bodily injury. For example, pointing a gun at somebody without doing them any harm is an aggravated assault third degree felony in the state of Utah. Raising a fist and communicating a threat would also qualify as an assault.
What are the Penalties Associated with an Assault or Battery Conviction in Utah?
The penalties associated with an assault or battery conviction in Utah are just like the rest of the charges. For a Class B or D misdemeanor, it is up to six months in jail and up to $1,500 fine plus surcharges. For an A misdemeanor, it’s up to a year in jail and up to a $2,500 fine plus a 90% surcharge. For a third degree felony, the indeterminate term is up to five years and a $5,000 fine plus a surcharge. A second degree felony is a $7,500 fine and up to 15 years in the state prison and so forth.
What Types of Defenses are Used in Assault Cases? Is Self-Defense Ever a Good Defense?
Yes, self-defense is probably the most common defense used in an assault case where the person protecting themselves has received a threat of harm against them. They have a real and honest perceived fear of harm to themselves where they haven’t engaged in any type of provocation and there is no reasonable chance of retreat or escaping the situation. Self-defense, in this case, can be very useful. Other defenses would be the defense of others, which is very similar to self-defense but it’s basically somebody else that’s being threatened. Defense of property is another type of defense used in assault cases. If somebody’s property is being invaded then they would be able to use reasonable force in defending their property especially where the home is involved. Another defense may be consent where the alleged victim did not consent to engage in a particular act.
What Happens if the Alleged Victim Recants Allegations of Assault? Is the Case Dropped Automatically?
If the alleged victim recants allegations of assault, the case is not automatically dropped. It’s still up to the prosecutor to determine whether or not they are able to and desire to go forward without the victim’s cooperation. Just because the victim does not cooperate or does not want the case to go forward doesn’t necessarily mean that it stops right there.
How do You Advise People that Want to Handle Assault Charges without an Attorney?
I would advise people wanting to handle assault charges without an attorney that hiring an attorney absolutely does not make a person look guilty. Everyone has a constitutional right to counsel under our criminal justice system, where you are accused of a crime and walking into a court that’s a foreign kind of situation and where, hopefully, a person doesn’t have a lot of experience. You are walking into an arena where the prosecutor is trained and very experienced as is the judge. A person walking into that situation absolutely should have legal representation.
What Sets You and Your Firm Apart in Handling Assault Cases in Utah?
What sets my firm apart in handling assault cases in Utah is that I handle all my cases personally for clients that hire my firm for representation and give each case the time and attention it requires to get the very best outcome possible. Assault cases usually stem from an incident that takes place in a very short period of time. What my firm does in approaching these cases is to go through that very short period in time with a very fine toothcomb to tease out all of the facts and the circumstances surrounding the altercation. That kind of attention to very fine detail is the way that my firm is able to leverage the best outcomes possible in any given case.
For more information on Injury of Victim in Assault Case, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (801) 455-1743 today.