A raised fist or some threatening words may seem petty, but the law makes these actions a criminal offense, where you can face serious penalties if found guilty. Such behaviors are classified as assault and while the illegal act carries a specific legal definition, it is a loosely used term and often confused with battery.
If you find yourself charged with assault in Michigan, it is important to secure a qualified Lansing assault and domestic violence lawyer with experience handling assault cases to help prove your innocence.
What Does Michigan Law Consider Simple Assault?
Not to be confused with actual physical contact, simple assault in Michigan is the attempt to cause injury to another or the act of saying or making threats. The act is not criminal if you do not possess the ability to actually carry out the threat or if your actions or words would not reasonably cause an individual to be fearful of pending violence.
It is important to note that to be arrested for simple assault, the action does not need to be intentional. For example, even if you had no intention of causing fear in another by saying threatening words, it is still considered assault as long as all the elements of the crime are present. Michigan assault charges will also include unintentional actions as well.
How Are Simple Assault Charges Punished?
Obviously, those charged with simple assault are concerned with whether they could face time behind bars. In many instances, the offense is committed in the heat of the moment and there is generally no ill-intent by the perpetrator. Nevertheless, the penalties in Michigan for simple assault do include jail time.
If you plead guilty or were found guilty of simple assault charges, the following are the penalties available to a judge at sentencing:
- A maximum of 93 days of jail time
- A maximum fine of $500
- Upward of two years’ probation
- Restitution to the victim
The amount of jail time, if any, will depend on a number of factors relating to the particular case. In all sentencing matters, the court is concerned with the facts of each case and the offender’s criminal history. In many instances, first-time offenders with no criminal record may escape jail, but each case must be determined on its own merit.
Under Michigan law, simple assault is a misdemeanor, and in addition to the obvious criminal penalties imposed, if you are convicted, it will form part of your criminal record. Therefore, it is important that you have an experienced criminal defense attorney who will help you fight the charges.
DeBruin Law, PLLC, Can Help Fight My Assault Charges
While many victims will ignore threats or may opt instead for civil penalties, the reality is that there are many individuals in Michigan faced with criminal simple assault charges. At DeBruin Law, PLLC, our criminal defense law firm located in East Lansing has experienced attorneys in the state who have dedicated years to providing reliable and high-quality legal representation to our clients.
We know what is needed, and we do not take any case lightly. Your attorney will work vigorously to investigate, research and prepare your case to secure the best results.
It is important to remember that you are innocent until proven guilty. We understand the criminal judicial system and are equipped with the knowledge to identify any opportunities that could lead to a reduction of your simple assault charges or getting the case dismissed. If your matter must go to trial, you can rely on our courtroom experience and our sound legal advice.
Do not delay in getting legal representation for your Michigan simple assault charge. Call DeBruin Law, PLLC, today at 517-731-0353 for a free and confidential consultation.