Assault Charges Explained
by San Diego Defense Attorneys
e are San Diego Assault Defense Attorneys. Our attorneys work to Dismiss Assault Charges, Acquit Assault Charges, and Reduce Penalties for Assault Charges in all criminal courts in the County of San Diego. If you have been charged with the Crime of Assault, we can help.
Assault is any willful act that would probably and directly result in the application of force on a person by a person who has the present ability to apply such force.
San Diego's assault law is primarily found in Part 1, Title 8, Chapter 9 of the California Penal Code. It is a crime that is committed against another person and is often referred to as an "attempted battery". Although assault and battery are often referred to in the same sentence as being the same thing, they are both legally distinct theories of law. In fact it's impossible to be convicted of battery and assault at the same time because assault is a necessary element of battery.
Types of Assault Under California Law
Assault is generally broken into 2 different classes with the distinction being increased fines, jail and prison sentences based off various enhancements:
- simple assault (misdemeanor)
- felony assault (aggravated).
Simple assault can be elevated to more punishment (increased fines, jail, community service, etc) depending on whom the alleged assault was committed against, place where it occurred or if certain items were used. In the most egregious situations, felony assault carries up to 144 months in California State Prison.
The following assault charges are misdemeanors under California law and carry local jail time up to one year:
- Penal Code § 240 - Simple Assault
- Pena Code § 241(a) - Assault
- Penal Code § 241(b) - Assault on Parking Enforcement Officer
- Penal Code § 241(c) - Assault on Emergency Person
- Penal Code § 241.2(a) - Assault on School, Park or Hospital Property
- Penal Code § 241.3(a) - Assault on Public Transportation
- Penal Code § 241.5(a) - Assault on Highway Worker
- Penal Code § 241.6 - Assault on School Worker
- Penal Code § 241.8 - Assault on member US Military
Felony Assault (aka Aggravated Assault)
- Penal Code § 149 - Assault Committed by Police Officer*
- Penal Code § 217.1(a) - Assault on Government Official
- Penal Code § 241.1 - Assault on Custodial Officer*
- Penal Code § 241.4 - Assault on School Police Officer*
- Penal Code § 241.7 - Assault on Juror*
- Penal Code § 244.5(b) - Assault with Stun Gun or Taser*
- Penal Code § 244.5(c) - Assault with Stun Gun/Taser on PO or Firefighter*
- Penal Code § 245(a)(1) - Assault with Deadly Weapon (not a firearm) or assault likely to Cause Great Bodily Injury*
- Penal Code § 245(a)(2) - Assault with a Firearm*
- Penal Code § 245.5(a) - ADW or force likely cause GBI on school employee*
- Penal Code § 244 - Assault with Caustic Chemicals
- Penal Code § 244.5 - Assault with a Stun Gun
- Penal Code § 245.2 - Assault on Transportation Persons or Passengers
- Penal Code § 245.3 Assault against Custodial Officer
- Penal Code § 245.5 Assault against School Employee
- Penal Code §§ 220 & 203 - Assault With Intent to Commit Mayhem
*Wobbler Assault - Can be filed either as Misdemeanor or Felony Assault
Penalties for Assault
Assault carries severe penalties if convicted. These include
- State Prison
- County Jail
- Formal Probation
- High Fines and Court Fees
- Anger Management Classes
- Stay Away Orders
- Victim Restitution Liability
- A Permanent Felony Record for a Crime Involving Moral Turpitude
Legal Defenses to Assault
- Defendant's act would not by its nature directly and probably result in the application of force to another.
- Defendant's act was not done willfully.
- Defendant was not aware of facts that gave rise to the act probably and directly resulting in the application of force to another
- Defendant did not have the present ability to apply force
- Victim consented to the Assault
- Defendant was acting in Self Defense
- Defendant was Defending Another
- Defendant was lawfully defendant property
- Defendant was Legally Unconscious
- Defendant did not commit the act
What We Can Do?
We are experienced and skilled Criminal and Assault Defense Attorneys. We diligently and confidently represent those charged with Assault in Court. We can conduct an independant investigation, gather the facts, obtain and review the government's evidence, and argue for dismissal, acquittal or reduction of charges to lesser offenses.
Our Attorney Advantage
An Assault Charge can have serious consequences. Hiring the right attorney may be the difference between a conviction and a dismissal. Take back the Upper Hand. Our defense attorneys are the best in the business:
- A Skilled and Experienced Defense Team - We are the right team to defend a criminal charge. We have successfully handled thousands of criminal cases and have satisfied clients all over California. We know the law, procedure and practicalities of criminal litigation that can give you the upper hand in court.
- Well Known and Respected - We appear in the courts of San Diego every day of the week. We are known by judges, prosecutors and our colleagues. Our attorneys have a reputation for competent and effective representation in the area of criminal law. We strive to achieve excellence on every case and have established a reputation for getting great results.
- State of The Art Legal Practice - We are a 100% Paperless law firm. All of our clients are given 24/7 access to everything in their case file. Attorney notes, evidence, witness statements and motions are all scanned and stored digitally in an easy to navigate cloud based system. Its encrypted to standards of the department of defense. Rest assured that your file is safe, sound and available to you whenever you need it.