The laws governing assault and battery consist of a variable, comprehensive framework. To account for all mitigating conditions involved in an occurrence of assault and battery, the law takes into consideration hundreds of different factors, including but not limited to the age and mental ability of the accused. The legal forces tasked with hearing and trying assault cases are fully aware that no two cases are alike, and that not all criminal assault scenarios are simply cut and dry affairs.

At Kaplan Lawyers PC, our main priority is keeping our clients informed, of the laws in play and how these laws pertain to their personal circumstances. We know that the defendants with the strongest cases are the ones who are fully and clearly instructed of their rights and who have a clear understanding of how the system works.

That’s why at Kaplan Lawyers PC we endeavor to consistently provide you with reliable, easy-to-access information. Information that’s always free, up-to-date, and specific to your situation. To find out more about what lies before you, it’s important to know that assault charges are categorized in degrees.

1st and 2nd Degree Assault Charges

When dealing with assault charges, an important issue will become the existence of intent. A prosecutor must prove that the defendant purposefully inflicted harm on another human being. This is true of all assault cases. If the defendant used a deadly weapon, or used an instrument in manner so as to inflict grievous injury upon a third party, and malice can be proved beyond reasonable doubt, the defendant may be proved guilty of assault in the first degree.

Mostly all 2nd degree assault charges consist of proving intent as well, though 2nd degree charges are lesser charges than 1st degree assault charges.

Example: Assaulting another person with a baseball bat, etc.

3rd Degree Assault Charges

If a defendant has been found criminally negligent with a deadly weapon, or has seriously injured another person with some other instrument, deadly or otherwise, they may still be found guilty in the third degree. In these cases, the defendant may not have set out to harm another human being, but because their behavior was severely reckless, they may be held accountable anyway. We must warn you though, even this lower tier of offense can bring along stiff penalties.

Example: Negligently firing a loaded pistol. 

Aggravated Assault

Aggravated assault is the most serious assault and battery charge of all. There are few scenarios wherein the defendant will more likely be charged with aggravated assault. If the defendant can be proved to have knowingly and willingly caused grave bodily harm to another human being, or the third party in question was a police officer or other “officer of the peace” (as deemed by the court), or if the assailant was over the age of the 18 and the victim was young (even if the assault itself would have otherwise qualified as 3rd degree), or the assault was sexual in nature, or the weapon in question was verifiably deadly- in these scenarios an aggravated assault may be assigned.

Oftentimes, aggravated assault charges come attached with aggravated battery charges in an attempt, on the prosecutor’s part, to have at least one charge “stick.” If you find yourself in such a position, it is important you retain counsel that knows how to best counter this stratagem. At Kaplan Lawyers PC, we’ve readily handled these exact situations.

Examples: Non-fatally assaulting another person with a knife, gun etc.

Contact Our NYC Assault & Battery Lawyers

An experienced law team becomes an invaluable asset when contesting a charge as serious as assault and battery. Without a trusted team of attorneys standing beside you, a courtroom will seem overwhelming. What’s more, is that our team is compassionate to your plight. We understand that momentary lapses in judgment aren’t always representative of a person’s life story. We believe everyone deserves a fair and just day in court, and with our expertise and support, we can make sure your case stands as strong as it can.

If you’ve got more questions, or are unsure of your next step, contact Kaplan Lawyers today. Our consultations are a free and easy way to get started. Every moment you delay is working against you. So contact us today.