NEW JERSEY SIMPLE ASSAULT ATTORNEY
Simple Assault charges are fairly common in the municipal court system throughout New Jersey. The offense is definitely not confined to thugs and gang members. Everyday people get charged with simple assault all the time when arguments escalate into physical contact, or as a result of intoxicated behavior, domestic disputes or any number of other causes. If you have been charged with a simple assault offense anywhere in NJ, it is critical that you retain the best attorney to defend you. Simple assault charges carry penalties and collateral consequences that can be severe.
New Jersey Simple Assault Statute
The New Jersey statute that addresses the offense of simple assault is provided for in N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1. This violation is unique in a sense because it is triggered as the result of not only purposeful or knowing conduct, but also reckless or even negligent acts. A person commits a disorderly persons offense for simple assault if he or she:
The required evidence to secure a conviction for simple assault depends on which of these three categories would apply and whether purposeful, knowing, reckless or negligent conduct must be shown. Below, we explain these and other aspects of the New Jersey simple assault statute.
III. Recklessly Causing a Simple Assault: Recklessly causing simple assault speaks of instances where an accused consciously disregards a known, substantial and unjustifiable risk that bodily injury shall be caused. The conduct has to involve a gross deviation from what would be reasonable under the circumstances in question. What is and is not reasonable under any given set of circumstances can become subjective. A knowledgeable defense lawyer, such as those at our office, can be invaluable when this issue comes up.
Degrees of a Simple Assault Charge
Simple assault is customarily a disorderly persons offense. Violations of this nature that arise as the result of a consensual fight or scuffle, then simple assault is a petty disorderly persons offense. If the victim of a simple assault is a police officer or some other public employee, for example, a teacher or coach, then the conduct can get you an aggravated assault charge, an indictable felony. Aggravated assault arising in this context is a third-degree offense if it results in bodily injury and a fourth-degree crime if it does not. The criminal defense attorneys at our firm are often successful in winning a downgrade of a simple assault charge and/or dismissal altogether.
Consequences for Simple Assault in New Jersey
Simple assault in the third-degree carries up to five (5) years in jail. If the simple assault is a fourth-degree crime, then the maximum jail term is 18 months. In the vast majority of scenarios, a simple assault will be charged as a disorderly persons offense, because the victim is not a police officer, teacher or other individual falling under a protected class enhancing the offense to aggravated assault. The consequences for a disorderly persons conviction of simple assault are jail time from 0 to six (6) months (30 days maximum for consensual fighting), probation as ordered by the Court, and a fine anwhere between $0 and $1,000.
Other fees for this charge include:
Simple Assault Domestic Violence Charges in New Jersey
When the accused commits a simple assault on a boyfriend/girlfriend, husband/wife or another individual falling under the protection of the New Jersey Prevention of Domestic Violence Act, the offense is treated as domestic violence. In such cases, a criminal charge for simple assault can be accompanied by a restraining order. Two separate court proceedings, one for prosecution of the assault offense and another in family court to decide whether the temporary restraining order should become final, will ensue.
Conditional Dismissal of a Simple Assault Offense in New Jersey
The diversionary program in New Jersey for non-drug disorderly persons offenses is called Conditional Dismissal. A person can avoid a criminal conviction and all of the penalties for simple assault if they are admitted into and successfully complete a period of Conditional Dismissal probation. This is typically one (1) year. Eligibility is limited to persons who have never obtained Pretrial Intervention (“PTI”), Conditional Discharge or Conditional Dismissal before. You are allowed only one diversion under NJ Law.
Contact Our Highly Skilled Simple Assault Defense Attorney At Our New Jersey Law Firm
There are clearly numerous pitfalls to simple assault charges which make it a must to obtain representation from a skilled defense attorney. Here at Spodek Law Group, our team includes attorneys who are former prosecutors that have decades of collective experience representing clients charged with simple assault. We definitely possess the know-how to secure an acquittal of this offense. To talk about your case with a lawyer who is knowledgeable in this area and will answer all your questions, call us as soon as you know you are facing a simple assault charge.
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