Even the most mild-mannered people can get into a confrontation which results in an assault. Perhaps you were simply defending yourself, or maybe you were just sticking up for one of your buddies. NJ police officers won’t want to hear it. When they arrive on the scene, it’s not unusual for all parties involved in the fight to be arrested and charged with assault.
Unfortunately, if you are facing assault charges, you are also facing harsh penalties. NJ prosecutors will not hesitate to seek maximum penalties for these charges because assault is classified as a violent crime. This means that you could be looking at serious prison time, heavy fines, and a violent crime conviction on your permanent record.
Simple assault charges tend to arise from a fight or scuffle. A disagreement turns into a heated discussion and one or more people are injured. Additionally, assault doesn’t have to be physical. You can also be charged with simple assault if you threaten another person with serious bodily injury.
As set forth by N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1(a), simple assault is typically classified as a disorderly persons offense. This means that simple assault charges will be handled at the municipal court level. Although simple assault is technically a misdemeanor offense, it still carries severe penalties. If you are convicted of simple assault in New Jersey, you face:
- Up to six months in jail
- Up to $1,000 in fines
- A requirement to pay restitution to the victim for hospital bills and recovery
- Exposure to a civil suit later on
Since aggravated assault is classified a felony-level offense, you are subject to harsh penalties if you are convicted. A second degree aggravated assault conviction carries a potential sentence of 10 years in state prison. Additionally, the No Early Release Act (NERA) applies to “violent” crimes such as second degree aggravated assault. This means that you will be required to serve a minimum of 85 percent of your sentence before becoming eligible for parole.
If you have been charged with assault, contact our firm today.
If you require strong and dedicated representation for any of your legal matters, contact The Law Offices of George J. Mardinly to schedule a consultation.