Specific acts, intent, circumstances, and conditions constitute the crime of aggravated assault in New Jersey. For instance, the use of a weapon during the assault, relationship to the victim, the defendant’s intent, and the severity of any injury sustained by the victim create a distinction between aggravated and simple assault. In some cases, an injury need not have occurred for the criminal act to still be considered aggravated assault. Typically, any crime in New Jersey that includes an attempted murder, robbery, rape, or assault with a deadly or dangerous weapon is considered aggravated assault – and this is a felony in NJ that carries severe penalties.
If you have been arrested or if you are a suspect in an aggravated assault investigation, Hackensack criminal defense attorney Adam M. Lustberg can review your case and advise you on your options. For the past decade, he has represented hundreds of defendants charged with violent crimes in Hackensack, Paramus, Fort Lee, Garfield, Newark, and elsewhere in New Jersey, so he knows how to help you deal with this serious charge.
Aggravated assault is a crime classified as a felony in NJ, depending upon the circumstances of the case. According to N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1b, aggravated assault is defined as an attempt to “cause serious bodily injury to another” or causing injury intentionally, knowingly or recklessly under “circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to the value of human life.” To get a conviction for aggravated assault, the prosecutor must prove that the defendant acted knowingly and recklessly. To prove that a person acted knowingly and recklessly in causing serious bodily harm to another person, one thing that will be considered is the use of a deadly weapon, such as a gun or a knife. Also considered will be whether the assault caused a risk of death and/or permanent loss, impairment, or disfigurement.
Often, aggravated assault charges are accompanied by criminal weapons charges that could bring more severe penalties. Moreover, many weapons offenses in New Jersey carry mandatory minimum terms of incarceration.
In the New Jersey criminal justice system, an aggravated assault differs greatly from simple assault charges. Aggravated assault is a felony that will be tried in superior court. If you are convicted of aggravated assault, you face a potential state prison sentence of up to ten (10) years. By contrast, simple assault is a disorderly person offense that will be handled in a municipal court and that carries significantly less severe penalties. If the assault was against a public employee or official such as a police officer, what would otherwise be considered a simple assault may rise to a charge of aggravated assault. Depending on the circumstances of your case, Bergen County criminal lawyer Adam M. Lustberg may be able to get your aggravated assault charge reduced to a simple assault charge. This would greatly lessen the potential penalties involved.
When you are charged with aggravated assault, the degree of your offense will determine the penalties if you are convicted. Whether you are charged with a fourth degree, third degree, or second degree offense depends upon many factors, including:
4th Degree: Up to 18 months incarceration and a fine of $10,000.
3rd Degree: Mandatory 3-5 years incarceration and a fine of $15,000.
2nd Degree: Mandatory 5-10 years incarceration, a fine of $150,000, and no early release requiring you to serve 85% of your sentence before parole eligibility.
We have years of experience in courts through NJ and NY and a proven track record of success in criminal cases.
During a trial, the prosecution must prove their case against you beyond a reasonable doubt. With a competent, skilled NJ aggravated assault attorney on your side, some successful defense strategies may include proving the following:
If you’ve been charged with aggravated assault in New Jersey, it is critical that you have an attorney who can build a solid, aggressive defense against those accusations. If you are convicted of aggravated assault without an attorney who may have been able to negotiate reduced or dismissed charges or a reduced sentence, years of incarceration may be unavoidable.
Hackensack criminal attorney Adam M. Lustberg has a proven track record of more than a decade of effectively representing individuals accused of violent crimes in NJ, including aggravated assault and simple assault. Without a competent aggravated assault attorney helping you contest the charges, you may be incarcerated for years. With so much at stake, protect yourself now by calling or emailing Lustberg Law today to begin the fight to ensure the best odds for your freedom.