WHEN A FIGHT
LEADS TO ASSAULT CHARGES
April 7, 2021
Data from the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting Program indicates that 3,668 arrests were made for aggravated assault offenses in Oklahoma in 2019. Under Oklahoma law, crimes involving physical attacks or threats of attacks may be classified as assault, battery, or assault and battery. As such, even fights that seem harmless may eventually lead to serious assault charges.
Getting into a fight that eventually leads to assault allegations doesn't have to ruin your life. At Wilson Law Firm PLLC, I have the experience and resources to help you fight your assault charges. For two years I served as a part-time assistant district attorney prosecuting and convicting at jury trial major crimes which gives me a unique perspective and thorough experience about how to defend criminal defense cases.
As an experienced Oklahoma criminal defense attorney, I will review and investigate all of the important facts of your situation and strategize an effective defense in pursuit of a favorable outcome. My firm is proud to serve clients throughout Shawnee, Chandler, Ada, Okemah, and Norman, Oklahoma.
Assault and Battery in Oklahoma
In the state of Oklahoma, a person may be facing assault or assault and battery for getting involved in a physical altercation or inflicting a physical injury on another person.
Oklahoma Statutes Section 21-641 defines assault as "any willful and unlawful attempt or offer with force or violence to do a corporal hurt to another." Therefore, threatening to hit or punch another person may actually be considered assault.
Assault and Battery
According to Oklahoma Statutes Section 21-642, "battery is any willful and unlawful use of force or violence upon the person of another." An offender who hits or punches another person may face battery charges.
When a Fight Turns into Assault Charges
Fighting can result in assault charges, even if two people mutually agreed to fight each other. A fight may be considered assault and battery after the initial fight has ended, then one party restarts the hostilities. Here are some factors that may be considered in order for a fight to lead to assault charges:
Who Started It?
The first thing that will be considered is who started the fight. The law considers the party who started the fight as the aggressor. In order to not be the aggressor, you must attempt to withdraw from the hostilities in good faith.
Was it Self-Defense?
In Oklahoma, self-defense is among the possible defenses against assault charges. According to Oklahoma law, a person "has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his or her ground and meet force with force, if attacked." If you were fighting back to defend yourself or prevent an imminent threat, this may be considered a form of self-defense.
How Much Harm Was Caused?
The seriousness of the assault charges may depend on the severity of the harm or injuries inflicted on the other party. If the harm was minimal and unintentional, the defendant may expect misdemeanor assault charges. However, if the defendant confronted the victim with intent to inflict serious damages, the charges may be more severe.
Who was Assaulted?
Another factor that may be considered is who was assaulted. Assault on a law enforcement officer, hospital staff, metro bus driver, or pregnant woman is treated differently and punished more severely compared to assaults on other persons.
Was a Weapon Used?
Whether the aggressor intended to cause little or no harm, the assault charges may become more serious once a deadly weapon is involved.
Possible penalties for assault charges include:
Jail Time: Up to 30 days in a county jail
Fines: A maximum fine of $500
Jail Time: Up to 90 days in a county jail
Fines: A maximum fine of $1,000
Hire an Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney
Engaging in a physical altercation or fight can be risky, physically and legally. Although you have the legal right to protect yourself or a loved one when threatened, a fistfight can easily transform from a harmless scuffle into a serious criminal incident. If you have been charged with assault crime due to a fight in the Shawnee area, it is imperative that you hire an experienced Oklahoma criminal defense attorney to protect your rights and strategize your defense.
At Wilson Law Firm PLLC, I have devoted my career to providing comprehensive legal guidance and strong representation to individuals facing assault charges for fighting. My extensive knowledge and understanding of the Oklahoma criminal justice system can help you craft an effective defense strategy and guide you through every phase of the legal proceedings. I will fight vigorously to defend your rights and help you fight your charges.
Contact me at Wilson Law Firm PLLC today to schedule a free case evaluation with a knowledgeable assault defense attorney. Based in Shawnee, Oklahoma, I'm proud to represent clients throughout the surrounding communities of Okemah, Chandler, Norman, and Ada. Call me today to get the comprehensive legal counsel, strong advocacy, and vigorous representation you need.