What to do if You Were Hit With Assault Charges While Defending Yourself

Nobody wants to be accused of committing a crime, but if you have suddenly found yourself facing prosecution as a result of defending yourself or somebody else, it is especially upsetting. It is not at all unusual for a person who hurts someone in the course of defending themselves to get charged with assault, but that doesn’t mean that you can just talk your way out of the charges. You need an experienced defense attorney who knows the steps you need to take to beat assault charges under these circumstances.

Though it may seem frustrating, the first thing that you will likely need to do when facing an assault charge for a situation in which you were defending yourself is to plead guilty. It is essential for you to acknowledge that you did it in order to later provide justification for your actions. You cannot argue that you acted in self-defense while pleading not guilty. You will not be able to assert your justification until trial when your attorney will cross-examine other witnesses and get them to provide testimony acknowledging the circumstances that caused you to believe that you needed to protect yourself or somebody else. Once that is successfully accomplished, it becomes the prosecutor’s responsibility to assert that you did not act in self-defense, and to do so in a way that leaves the jury with no reasonable doubt. You won’t have to do anything else to prove your motivations.

One of the biggest hurdles that the prosecutor will face is trying to prove that you did not actually believe yourself or the person you were protecting was in danger, or that it was unreasonable for you to think so. They may also try to prove that you provoked the person you are accused of assaulting, or that the person you are charged with assaulting was retreating, or that you did not stop even when told to do so.

No matter how justified you may have felt at the time, facing assault charges puts you in a position where simply blaming the other person is not enough. You need an experienced criminal defense attorney who can help you make clear that you acted in self-defense and help you get your assault charges dropped. To learn about how we can help, contact our office today to set up a consultation to discuss your case.