Ann Arbor Assault Lawyer Defends Against Assault and Battery Convictions
Assault and battery charges encompass a wide range of cases from a physical fight to something as minor as a push. In an assault case there are a variety of defenses available. Ann Arbor assault lawyer, Sam Bernstein, is experienced with these particular defenses. An assault and battery charge can affect your custody arrangements and lead to problems if you are seeking new employment. Sam Bernstein, at ArborYpsi Law has experience handling all types of assault and battery cases.
Understanding Assault and Battery Charges
What is Considered Assault?
Assault and battery charges are often associated together, but they are actually two distinct and separate crimes. Assault in Michigan is defined as an attempt to cause physical injury to another person. It includes any intentional unlawful act or threat of action against another person. Attempting to strike someone, brandishing a weapon or threatening violence can all be considered assault under Michigan law. If the person being threatened perceives that the offender has the ability to carry out the threat and reasonably causes that person to feel afraid, then the act is considered an assault.
Assault Charge Levels in Michigan
In Michigan, there are several different types of assault charge levels.
- Assault - A misdemeanor that is punishable by up to 93 days in jail, a $500 fine or both.
- Aggravated Assault - If a person who is assaulted requires medical treatment you can be charged with aggravated assault. This is a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail, $1000 fine, or both.
- Felonious Assault - An assault with a dangerous weapon is a felony. A dangerous weapon can be a gun or a knife but also any object that is used as a weapon. A felonious assault is punishable by up to 4 years in prison, a $2,000 fine, or both.
The Differences Between Battery and Assault
Battery, on the other hand, is the intentional infliction of violence or force against another person or hitting someone with an object. Although assault can occur without a battery charge attached, a battery charge is often accompanied by an assault charge since it is implied that a threat occurred before the battery was carried out. For example, if someone threatened to punch you and you perceived that the threat was reasonably likely to occur, an assault has occurred. If the person proceeds to actually punch you, then a battery has also occurred. Naturally, an assault and battery charge carries substantially harsher penalties than an assault charge alone.
If you’ve been accused of committing assault, battery or assault and battery, it’s important to contact an attorney who uniquely understands how to defend against these issues. Your Ann Arbor assault lawyer can guide you through the process of mounting a solid defense against each case and advise whether it might be possible to drop one or both charges.
Our Ann Arbor Assault Attorney Investigates Cases to Provide Your Best Defense
As an experienced Ann Arbor assault attorney, Sam Bernstein will investigate your case, conducting a full evaluation before going to court. We will obtain the police report and review it with you. The ArborYpsi Law team will ask relevant questions, such as:
- Were there witnesses to the assault?
- Is the case “he-said-she-said?”
- Is there any evidence to support the claims?
- When were the police called?
- Are there any reasons why the accuser would not be truthful?
Our questioning will poke holes in the State’s case and help you achieve a proper defense.
Our Ann Arbor Assault Lawyer Can Also Fight Your Domestic Battery and Assault Charges
A domestic violence charge is an assault or battery within the context of a romantic or familial relationship. Domestic violence charges are more common than ever now. All Washtenaw County district court even have a dedicated "DV docket" to group all these cases together in court.
Domestic assault and battery charges are often some of the most difficult cases to prove because the nature of the parties’ relationship often breeds some level of hostility. It is not uncommon for the victim to inflate or twist the truth of the circumstances in order to intentionally harm the accused. False accusations are often leveraged so that parties to a divorce or child custody battle can gain the upper hand. An experienced Ann Arbor assault lawyer understands that a thorough investigation into the facts of an incident is your best and smartest defense against domestic assault charges. Your attorney will likely study the police report and identify signs that the allegation might be overreaching or even false.
ArborYpsi Law Provides Top-Rated Defense Services Throughout Michigan
A knowledgeable Ann Arbor assault lawyer knows the system and is quite familiar with these types of cases. As such, there are a variety of defenses that may be available to you in court, including the following:
- Self Defense - Legally, you have the right to defend yourself in certain situations. The prosecution will bear the burden of proving that you did not act in self-defense.
- Mutual Combat - While this is somewhat similar to self-defense, it’s not a legal defense. Juries may sympathize if both parties were equally at fault for the fight. For example, our Ann Arbor assault attorney was able to secure a not guilty verdict where a client had a fight with his sister.
- Accuser Lies - If the accuser lies to the police about the assault, you may also have a case. We helped to win a jury trial where one of our clients was wrongfully accused of assault.
- Accident - Assault must be an intentional act. For example, if you were swinging your arms and accidentally hit someone, this would not be considered assault. Our team was able to get a dismissal in a case where our client was falsely accused of assault when it was an accident.
Contact an Experienced Ann Arbor Assault Lawyer
Sam Bernstein, an Ann Arbor assault attorney, at ArborYpsi Law has advanced experience handling assault crimes. If you’ve been charged with assault, contact our office to schedule a free consultation.