Even if you consider yourself non-violent, there’s always a chance that someone will accuse you of an assault crime. Most importantly, when you’re arrested for assault, connecting with an experienced criminal defense attorney is the most important step you can take.
The criminal justice system can be swift and overwhelming. When you’re arrested for an assault crime, the system moves against you. It attempts to separate you from everything you know and love. As with all criminal proceedings, your case works its way through the system step-by-step.
A lot of activity takes place at your arraignment hearing. It sets the tone for your case and everything that follows. The court confirms the charges against you and reviews your Miranda rights. If you haven’t yet hired an attorney, the court may assign one to represent you. Your continued access to an assigned attorney is contingent upon your income qualifications.
At your arraignment, you can consult with your attorney and respond to the charges with a plea that acknowledges or denies guilt or disputes the facts as presented. If the court grants you a release on bail, they set the terms and requirements. If the court refuses to release you or you can’t comply with their terms, you remain in jail until your case is resolved. Before you leave your arraignment, the court sets a date for your next hearing.
The Charges Against You
At your arraignment, the court charges you based on crimes outlined in Connecticut General Statutes. Your charges will reflect what law enforcement officials perceive as valid evidence from victims and witnesses. Your charges determine the court where your case will be heard as well as the nature and extent of any potential punishment.
- First Degree Assault §53a-59, Class B Felony: Intent to cause serious bodily harm or permanent disfigurement with a deadly weapon, injuring someone with a gun, etc. Punishment: Imprisonment up to 20 years (minimum 5 years), up to $15,000 fine.
- Second Degree Assault §53a-60, Class C or D Felony: Intentionally or recklessly causing serious harm with a dangerous instrument, weapon, or drug. Punishment: Imprisonment up to five years (1-year minimum if assault involved a gun), up to $5,000 fine.
- Third Degree Assault §53a-61, Class A Misdemeanor: Intentionally causing harm, recklessly causing serious harm, criminal negligence. Punishment: Imprisonment up to one-year, up to $2,000 fine.
Your case moves forward through a series of hearings. So each hearing presents an opportunity for prosecution and defense to review the evidence and examine the chances of proving the charges against you. Hearings allow an exchange of information. They encourage case resolution via plea deal, dismissal, or other negotiated outcomes.
Resolving Your Case
You will have several opportunities to resolve your assault case prior to trial. Thus, if you reach a plea agreement, the court will finalize the details at a hearing. Eventually, if you don’t resolve your case, both sides will present testimony at a formal trial. A judge or jury will decide your guilt or innocence and determine your punishment.
Contact Sadler Law Group
So, if you’ve been charged with an assault crime, you need an attorney who understands the system and can help you make the most beneficial defense decisions. Contact Sadler Law Group at (203) 951-1360 or complete our contact form to schedule a consultation.