Assault Attorney in Lawrence, Kansas
When a crime has any element of intentional violence, conviction penalties are more serious than for crimes that lack a victim of violence. In Kansas, they are referred to as “person felonies.”
If you have been accused of or charged with assault or aggravated assault in Kansas or Missouri, including Lawrence, Olathe, Lenexa, or Overland Park, hiring a skilled criminal defense attorney is your best option. Regardless of whether you are innocent of the charges, guilty, or there were extenuating or misleading circumstances involved, the best defense is an aggressive offense.
Criminal defense is all I handle at Chahine Legal LLC, and it is all I have done for more than 20 years. My clients have direct access to me because they need to know I am working on their defense.
If you are facing assault charges, reach out to me at Chahine Legal LLC today to schedule a consultation to start building your defense.
What Is Considered Assault?
Assault is physically attacking someone with the intent to harm, but it can also mean credibly threatening someone with physical harm. You do not have to strike or harm someone to be charged with assault. Actions that put them in fear of physical harm are enough.
Types of Assault Charges
Simple assault in Kansas is intentionally putting someone in reasonable fear of bodily harm. It is charged as a Class C misdemeanor, but that does not mean the offense does not have serious consequences. An example of simple assault would be coming toward someone with a baseball bat raised, threatening to strike them. No actual physical contact is required to be charged with simple assault or with battery.
In Missouri, assault charges are categorized by degree, based largely on the threat of violence or the injuries caused. Assault in the fourth degree is the intentional or reckless threat or causing physical injury and is charged as a misdemeanor. Assault in the third, second, and first degrees are felonies. Assault in the first degree is the attempt to kill or intentionally cause serious injury to someone else.
Aggravated assault in Kansas is causing someone reasonable fear of physical harm while the perpetrator is disguised, using a deadly weapon, or while intending to commit another felony. For example, if a masked perpetrator wields a gun during a store robbery. Again, no actual physical harm is required, merely the threat. Aggravated battery, the most serious crime, is causing significant bodily harm with or without a weapon or physical contact with a weapon.
In Missouri, aggravated assault is based on the type of victim threatened or harmed. These include law enforcement (including probation and parole officers), emergency responders, the disabled, elderly, and other special victims. Aggravated assault charges correlate with the types of conduct as regular assault, but the degree and penalties are increased based on the aggravating conditions.
For example, if you threaten someone with a weapon, you may face a fourth-degree Class A misdemeanor assault charge. However, if the person you threaten is your elderly neighbor, you may face a second-degree Class A misdemeanor assault charge.
Potential Penalties If Convicted
Penalties for misdemeanor convictions in Kansas start with up to 30 days in jail and up to $500 in fines. In Missouri, you may spend up to one year in jail and pay fines of up to $2,000.
An aggravated battery conviction in Kansas could result in up to 43 months in prison. In Missouri, you can spend up to 15 years in prison for a first-degree felony assault conviction.
Defenses always depend on the circumstances of the alleged incident from which the charges stem. Some of the more common defenses include:
Mistaken identity if you were not the perpetrator, which can occur especially if the perpetrator was masked or otherwise disguised
Lack of reasonable fear of imminent danger on the part of the alleged victim
Actions taken in self-defense or in the defense of someone else
False accusations motivated by revenge or anger
Accidental injury without intent or recklessness
Even a conviction for the least-serious misdemeanor assault charge can forever mark you as a violent person. That can affect your employment, housing opportunities, even child custody and visitation. Any accusation or charge of assault should not be taken lightly.
Serving Lawrence, Kansas
At Chahine Legal LLC in Lawrence, Kansas, I bring more than two decades of experience to each for every client I serve. Criminal defense is the focus of my practice. My experience and singular focus may make all the difference in the outcome of your case. Let’s talk about your case and your future. Call me at Chahine Legal LLC.