New Jersey Simple Assault Lawyers
In New Jersey, simple assault is considered a violent crime. While it is the least severe of the assault charges, it is still a serious offense. A person can be charged with simple assault if he or she is suspected for any of the following:
- Causing or attempting to cause bodily injury to another human being, which must be caused purposely, knowingly or recklessly
- Negligently injuring someone using a deadly weapon
- Putting another person in a position of fear of suffering a serious bodily injury
Simple assault defined
An injury for the purposes of a simple assault offense must be “bodily injury”,and not mental, emotional, or psychological injury. A bodily injury includes physical pain, illness, or impairment. However, if the injury if serious enough to cause death or long term impairment or disfigurement, then the charge of simple assault could likely be escalated to a much greater offense known as aggravated assault.
Purpose and knowledge show intent to harm on part of the suspect, but it can also be determined that the act is reckless, which means that the individual accused of the simple assault knew that the act would cause another person injury, but did not care about the outcome. A person can also be charged with being negligent for not taking reasonable care that a particular act could harm a person.
A weapon can be of any kind, even if the original purpose of object is not intended as a weapon, such as a crow bar or broken bottle, is used during the assault which results in serious bodily injury to the victim it is considered a deadly weapon.
In New Jersey, simple assault is ordinarily considered a disorderly persons offense, or misdemeanor. However there are certain conditions under which simple assault could be considered a more serious crime with more severe legal repercussions.
- when committed against an institutionalized elderly person, while working as an employee in care facility
- when committed in presence of a child below 16 years of age
- at a school or community sponsored sports event
The penalties for simple assault vary depending upon the circumstances, but range from fines of $500 to over $1000, and imprisonment of up to 18 months.
Contact our New Jersey simple assault lawyers
A conviction of simple assault can reflect poorly upon one’s ability to gain employment, secure credit, and be approved for housing, etc. There are a myriad of defenses that can be successful, but it is important that skilled counsel be engaged as soon as possible. Call us today at (908) 561-5577 or contact us online. Your initial consultation is free.