Posted on: 26 January 2015Share
The story of a wrongfully accused individual fighting just to convince a single soul of their innocence can make for great television. Unfortunately, this scenario quickly becomes far less entertaining when you are the person who has been wrongfully accused of a committing a serious crime, such as assault. Suddenly, you may find yourself facing the real possibility of spending years in prison and losing out on all of the things that matter most to you in this world. Thankfully, while the solution to this problem may not be quite as glamorous as you see on television, it is quite possible to prove your innocence with the help of a qualified criminal lawyer and one of the legal defenses to assault that are outlined below.
You Had Consent
The charge of assault requires that you harmed or attempted to do harm to another person against their will. While it can be difficult to imagine someone consenting to assault, there are actually many situations in which this defense may apply. For instance, if the victim in your case was injured during an event in which you were both willing participants, you will be able to argue that the victim knew the risks and provided their consent. Therefore, no assault occurred. This defense is most commonly used when an individual is injured as the result of sports activities, such as an amateur boxing or MMA match.
You Were Defending Yourself
The law provides all private citizens with the right to defend themselves using a reasonable amount of force. When using this defense, there are two key facts that your lawyer will need to prove. First, you will need to demonstrate that you had reason to believe your safety was in jeopardy. For instance, if the individual hit you or threatened you with a weapon.
Next, you will need to demonstrate that you acted in a reasonable manner to neutralize the threat. The ability to prove this second element can often mean the difference between a success defense and an assault conviction. For example, if the victim in your case hit you using their bare hand and you hit them back, this is self defense and you are not guilty of assault. However, if the victim hit you using their bare hand and you beat them within an inch of their life using a heavy metal pipe, the force used is not considered reasonable and claiming self defense will not be a successful strategy in your case.
A Final Thought
Even when similar, the facts in each assault case will be slightly different. It is these differences that will often reveal the best possible defense. That is why it is so important to always consult a qualified lawyer (such as one from Terry Napora Law Office) who can identify these distinct facts and help you to develop the best defense.