954-385-9160
1655 North Commerce Parkway, Suite 201
Weston, FL 33326
Criminal Defense Attorney

Assault

Because the two terms frequently appear together, people often confuse assault and battery. Battery is the more serious charge. Even when it is merely attempted, battery is considered a violent act and is punishable by up to one year in prison and a fine of up $1,000. Though it is not as serious, assault is still a criminal offense.

In the state of Florida, the crime has three elements: an unlawful or intentional threat of violence against another person; the reasonable ability to follow through with said threat when it was made; and the fear that was created by the threat in the intended victim.

Even though simple assault is only a second degree misdemeanor under Florida law, a person convicted of the crime will be subject to jail time and serious fines. A judge may order any combination of the following: up to $500 in fines, up to 6 months of probation, up to 60 days in jail.

More importantly, a misdemeanor can stay on your record indefinitely, which will make it harder to find and keep a job. It may be possible to have the conviction for assault sealed or expunged in Florida, but it is a complicated, time-consuming, and expensive process. In other words, it is often best to fight the allegations with the help of a qualified criminal defense attorney like Evan H. Baron.

With over 25 years of experience as a family and defense attorney, Mr. Baron has helped countless clients through difficult and emotional events. As with any criminal case, he and his team will begin by examining all of the facts of the cases before they develop a solid defense strategy. Though each case is different, the two most common defenses for allegations of simple assault are conditional threat and unreasonable fear.

A conditional threat is when a person threatens a violent act, but does not specify a time or a date. This is not enough to satisfy a charge of simple assault. The victim must have been in imminent fear of violence, which leads us to the defense of unreasonable fear. The victim must swear under oath that they believed the defendant would actually follow through on their threat. If they simply felt threatened but were in no real fear of violence or battery, the charge of assault will not stand.

To schedule a free initial consultation with one of our experienced criminal attorneys, please call (954) 385-9160, or send us an email.