Linden NJ Simple Assault Lawyer
Simple Assault Charge in Linden
A simple assault charge in Linden is something that arises frequently. The offense is often confronted in the context of domestic violence although it can result from a physical encounter in far more contexts. Perhaps you were involved in a fight at an athletic event, during the course of an altercation with a neighbor or a disagreement that turned into a melee. Irrespective of what resulted in your being charged with simple assault in Linden, the best thing you can do to help yourself is hire competent lawyer to represent you. Many of the attorneys at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall are former prosecutors who fully understand the nuances of defending simple assault charges. Our lawyers are also extremely familiar with the Linden Municipal Court as they have been handling criminal cases there for decades. Contact our Union NJ Office at 908-272-1700 to speak to an attorney on our team immediately.
Linden Simple Assault in Union County
New Jersey’s Simple Assault Law is contained at N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1. Subsection (a) of this statute renders an individual guilty of simple assault if they: (1) attempt to cause or purposely, knowingly or recklessly cause bodily injury to another; (2) negligently cause bodily injury to another with a deadly weapon; or (3) attempt by physical menace to put another person in fear of imminent serious bodily injury.
There is a good amount of legalese in the statute above, so let’s break it down by defining some key terms:
- Attempt. The use of the word “attempt” in the statute indicates that you do not need to actually hurt someone, or actually put someone in fear of being injured, to have committed simple assault. All you need to do is make the attempt. For example, you can throw a punch and miss your target. That still can be a simple assault because you attempted to cause injury or frighten the victim.
- Recklessly. To “recklessly” cause injury means that you did not necessarily intend to hurt someone (that would be purposeful or knowing conduct). Rather, you did something that grossly deviated from what would be reasonable under the circumstances, and you disregarded a huge risk that someone could get injured.
- Negligently. Negligent conduct is similar to recklessness but to a lesser degree. Rather than doing something that grossly deviates from reasonable behavior, negligence is doing something where there was a knowing, substantial, and unjustifiable risk of causing injury. Consequently, to be guilty of simple assault for merely negligent behavior under the statute, you need to have used a deadly weapon.
- Bodily injury. Bodily injury means physical pain, illness, or any impairment of a person’s physical condition. As you can expect, “serious bodily injury” is a more extreme type of bodily injury that encompasses any injury involving a substantial risk of death or permanent disfigurement.
Penalties for Simple Assault
Simple assault is generally a disorderly persons offense. However, the offense can be graded up or down based on the circumstances of the case. Here is a list of the different grades for the offense from least serious to most serious:
Petty disorderly persons offense. If the assault happened during a fight where the parties consented to fighting, the charge is a petty disorderly persons offense, which can result in a penalty of up to 30 days in jail and up to a $500 fine.
Disorderly persons offense. As noted above, simple assault is generally a disorderly persons offense, which means that, in general, the penalty can be up to 6 months in jail and up to a $1,000 fine.
Fourth-degree offense. If the simple assault was committed on a public official, such as a police officer, it results in a fourth degree crime for aggravated assault and penalties that include up to 18 months in prison and a fine up to $10,000.
Third-degree offense. If the simple assault was committed on a police officer, teacher, EMT or other public official covered by 2C:12-1b(5), the conduct results in a third degree crime for aggravated assault, up to 5 years in prison and a fine of up to $15,000.
Linden Simple Assault Attorneys
Whether you got into a fight or became violent and injured a police officer during an arrest, you need to make sure that your rights are protected in the face of a Linden simple assault charge. While a simple assault charge is typically a non-indictable disorderly persons offense handled in Linden Municipal Court, you should make sure that you have the advice and representation of a criminal defense lawyer who is skilled in this area of law. The attorneys at the Marshall Firm have the know-how to aggressively defend your case and will work hard to mitigate the consequences of a conviction. Call us at 908-272-1700 for a free initial consultation with an attorney at the firm. Lawyers are available 24/7 to assist you so contact us anytime.