Facing accusations of assault can be a daunting experience. You may be feeling scared, alone, and uncertain of what the future holds. The consequences of a criminal conviction are severe and can negatively impact every aspect of your life, including work, education opportunities, family relationships, or even personal relationships. However, our country operates under the premise that a person is innocent until proven guilty, and that is where our team of aggressive, experienced criminal defense lawyers comes in.
Just because you are facing these charges does not mean you are guilty. Many successful criminal defense cases prove that the prosecution’s case is not as strong as they thought. By working directly with the Law Office of Conor Bell in Truckee, California, you can be confident that our team will explore every avenue to get the best possible outcome for your case and protect you from potentially life-altering consequences that come with a conviction.
What Is Assault in Nevada County, California?
The first step in building a solid defense is understanding the charges and offenses you are up against. Assault is a broad term that describes any harmful or offensive contact with the person of another, such as pushing, hitting, or even spitting on someone. To be charged with assault in California, the prosecutor must prove that you:
- Actively made an unlawful attempt to commit a violent injury against another person.
- Did so with the apparent ability to cause harm, meaning that you appeared to have the physical means and opportunity to carry out the threat.
- The other person reasonably feared that they were about to be harmed due to your actions.
- Caused physical harm to another person or placed them in reasonable apprehension of immediate harm through your words or actions.
For the prosecution to prove that you were, in fact, guilty of assault, they will have to present evidence such as eyewitness accounts, medical records, or video footage that support their claims. Without this type of concrete evidence, it may be difficult for the prosecution to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt. Also, even if the prosecution has this type of evidence, a skilled Lake Tahoe criminal defense lawyer may be able to poke holes in their case and create reasonable doubt in the minds of the jury. This can result in a reduction or dismissal of your charges, allowing you to move on with your life without fear of a conviction.
What Are Common Assault Cases?
There are many different types of assault cases, each with its own set of unique circumstances. The most common types of assault cases we see involve:
- Stalking. This is defined as repeated harassment or unwanted contact with a person, whether through phone calls, text messages, social media postings, or in person. This type of harassment can cause the victim to feel scared, threatened, or even harassed.
- Domestic violence. This is any type of assault or battery that takes place between family members, current or former spouses, or people who are dating or have dated in the past. These cases are often emotionally charged and complex, requiring a skilled criminal defense attorney to identify and exploit weaknesses in the prosecution’s case.
- Sexual assault. Sexual assault is any unwanted sexual contact, ranging from groping to rape. These cases are often very emotionally charged and can be difficult to prove without DNA evidence or eyewitness testimony.
- Child abuse. This is any assault or neglect of a child, including physical abuse or emotional abuse. It includes physically harming a child and also placing them in a situation that puts the child’s health or safety at risk.
- Elder abuse. This is any assault or neglect of an elderly person, including physical abuse or emotional abuse. It includes physically harming an elderly person and also placing them in a situation that puts the elderly person’s health or safety at risk.
What Types of Defenses Can Be Used in an Assault Case?
There are several possible defenses that can be used in assault cases, depending on the specific facts and circumstances of your case. Some of the most common defenses we see in assault cases include:
- Self-defense. This is a claim that you only used force against the victim to protect yourself from imminent harm. To use this defense, you must have reasonably believed that you were in danger of being harmed and that the only way to protect yourself was to use force.
- Defense of others. This is a claim that you only used force against the victim to protect someone else from imminent harm. To use this defense, you must have reasonably believed that another person was in danger of being harmed and that the only way to protect them was to use force.
- Insanity. This is a defense that you were not in control of your actions at the time of the assault due to a mental illness or defect. This is a very difficult defense to win because it requires a psychiatric evaluation and proof of your mental illness or defect. However, if successful, it may result in a reduction or dismissal of your charges.
- Lack of evidence. This can include a number of things, such as lack of eyewitness testimony or credibility problems with witnesses, DNA evidence that doesn’t match up with the victim, or video evidence that doesn’t support the victim’s story. If the prosecution doesn’t have enough evidence to prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, we may be able to get the charges reduced or dismissed.
- Mistaken identity. This is a claim that you are not the person who committed the assault. If there is any doubt as to your identity, we may be able to get the charges against you reduced or dismissed.
- False allegation. This is a claim that the victim falsely accused you of assault. This can happen for several reasons, such as revenge, jealousy, or a desire to get the attention or sympathy of others.
Contact a Criminal Defense Attorney at The Law Office of Conor Bell Today
If you or someone you know has been charged with assault, contact the Law Office of Conor Bell today in South Lake Tahoe. We are experienced criminal defense lawyers who fight aggressively for your rights. Everyone deserves a fair trial, and we make sure you get one. Contact us today to begin your judgment-free, confidential consultation.