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Haddon Heights Assault Lawyer

Haddon Heights is safer than nearly 80% of cities in the United States. However, the historic neighborhood that Helmer Legal’s main office has called home since 1994 is not without its share of violent crime. Just this year there have been approximately five reports of violent crimes, and four reports of assault in the area.

An assault conviction carries steep immediate penalties and devastating long-term consequences to your freedom, employment and future. Helmer, Conley & Kasselman, P.A. knows the potential consequences and fights hard to protect your rights. We are an aggressive criminal defense law firm located in Haddon Heights that includes NJ Supreme Court certified as criminal trial attorneys on our team.

What is Assault?

Assault is classified as simple or aggravated, depending upon the facts, with aggravated assault being the more serious. Many states charge assault and battery as two separate crimes. However, New Jersey law considers battery a form of assault. Simple assault may take several different forms, including:

  • Recklessly, knowingly or purposefully causing bodily injury to another person
  • Attempting to cause bodily injury
  • Negligently causing bodily injury with a deadly weapon, or
  • Using physical menace to put another person in fear of imminent serious bodily injury

Aggravated Assault

Aggravated assault is more serious and carries heavier penalties. To convict for aggravated assault, the state must prove that you caused serious bodily injury and:

  • Acted purposely or knowingly
  • Acted recklessly under circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to the value of human life, or
  • Purposely, knowingly or recklessly caused bodily injury with a deadly weapon

Recklessly, Knowingly and Purposely

To convict you of assault, the prosecution must prove each element beyond a reasonable doubt. Our defense team aggressively weakens the prosecution’s case, often by refuting the frame of mind element. The prosecution must show that you acted:

  • Purposely. You wanted to injure the person.
  • Knowingly. You were aware your actions would almost certainly cause injury.
  • Recklessly. You showed a conscious disregard for the substantial and unjustifiable risk that your actions would result in injury
  • Negligently. You should have been aware that your actions could cause injury, but acted anyway.

Assault Penalties

Simple assault is a misdemeanor that carries up to six months in prison. Aggravated assault may be charged as a:

  • Second-degree crime. Five to 10 years in prison
  • Third-degree crime. Three to five years in prison
  • Fourth-degree crime. Up to 18 months in prison

If appropriate our firm may seek reduced charges from aggravated assault to simple assault or to a lower degree crime. This tactic allows you to avoid or reduce your jail sentence when the prosecution has sufficient evidence against you.

Defenses Against Assault Charges

Even if the prosecution proves that you committed an assault, you may have a valid defense for your conduct, which may result in an acquittal or the reduction of the charges or penalties. We review your case for such defenses as:

  • Self defense. Your use of force may be justified if you reasonably believed it was immediately necessary to protect yourself.
  • Defense of someone else. Force may be justified to protect another person who you reasonably believed was in danger of injury.
  • Defending property. You also have the right to protect your property from immediate damage from a vandal, intruder or trespasser.
  • Intoxication. You may lack the necessary mental state to commit assault because of impairment by alcohol or drugs.
  • Mental illness. You may lack the necessary mental state because of a mental illness, which we prove through your medical history and evaluations by medical experts.

Consult with A Haddon Heights Assault Lawyer Today

Helmer, Conley & Kasselman, P.A. is an experienced criminal defense firm with an aggressive team of assault defense lawyers. Call our Haddon Heights office at 856-547-7888 or contact us online.

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Helmer, Conley & Kasselman, P.A.

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