"Our Assault Attorneys Fight Hard!" John Raggio
Dallas Assault Lawyers
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An assault and battery charge in Dallas can have grave consequences for any defendant. You may face an extended prison sentence, be forced to pay excessive fines, or be convicted of unwarranted charges. When you are facing a serious crime such as a violent offense or assault charge, you need aggressive defense from a Dallas assault & battery defense attorney that you can trust to get results. As a Dallas Assault Lawyer, I am experienced in handling assault allegations of the most violent nature.
A violent crime or assault charge may land you in jail, prevent you from future employment, or carry excessive fines. When you are facing charges, you need compelling and effective assault and battery defense.
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Even before you are charged with a violent crime, a prosecutor will begin building a case against you. As a Dallas Assault & Battery lawyer I know how to combat the evidence presented against you and build a compelling case in your defense. It is imperative that you contact an assault and battery lawyer experienced in the felony arena as soon as possible to ensure that your rights are preserved and you do not make an already threatening situation worse. To be reasonably safe, you should have the guidance of an experienced assault and battery lawyer with you at every step of the criminal proceeding; from the initial pre-filing investigation through the final resolution of your case. Dallas assault lawyers are dedicated to protecting client's rights throughout the criminal process.
Being arrested for assault or battery in Dallas is often an overwhelming experience. Most individuals arrested for assault do not understand why they have even been taken into custody. This is mainly due to the fact that several people are unaware that an arrest for assault can be made if a person is thought to have intended to commit physical violence, battery, or willful use of force on another individual. Conversely, under Texas Law, physical contact must take place outside of another person’s consent in order for an arrest for battery to occur. An experienced Dallas assault defense attorney will be able to help an arrested individual understand his or her legal rights and build a strong defense on their behalf.
As a Dallas criminal lawyer, I am aggressive and knowledgeable in Texas assault & battery law. I have been defending the rights of those accused of a wide range of criminal offenses, including those that relate to assault and battery for many years. I am very familiar with the many potential defenses to an assault or battery offense. Some of these defenses may include intoxication, self-defense, consent on the part of the alleged victim, defense of another, and lack of requisite intent to commit battery. The time to act is now.
Related but distinct crimes. Battery is the unlawful application of physical force to another; assault is an attempt to commit battery or an act that may reasonably cause fear of imminent battery. With manslaughter and murder, these concepts are articulated to protect against rude and undesired physical contact or the threat of it. Battery requires no minimum degree of force, nor does it need to be applied directly; administering poison and transmitting a disease may both be battery. Accidents and ordinary negligence are not, nor is reasonable force used in the performance of duty (e.g., by a police officer).
Two separate offenses against the person that when used in one expression may be defined as any unlawful and un permitted touching of another. Assault is an act that creates an apprehension in another of an imminent, harmful, or offensive contact. The act consists of a threat of harm accompanied by an apparent, present ability to carry out the threat. Battery is a harmful or offensive touching of another.
The main distinction between the two offenses is the existence or nonexistence of a touching or contact. While contact is an essential element of battery, there must be an absence of contact for assault. Sometimes assault is defined loosely to include battery.
Assault and battery are offenses in both criminal and tort law and, therefore, they can give rise to criminal or civil liability. In criminal law, an assault may additionally be defined as any attempt to commit a battery.
At common law, both offenses were misdemeanors. Today, under virtually all criminal codes, they are either misdemeanors or felonies. They are characterized as felonious when accompanied by a criminal intent, such as an intent to kill, rob, or rape, or when they are committed with a dangerous weapon.
Intent is an essential element of both offenses. Generally, it is only necessary for the defendant to have an intent to do the act that causes the harm. In other words, the act must be done voluntarily. Although an intent to harm the victim is likely to exist, it is not a required element of either offense. There is an exception to this rule for the attempted battery type of criminal assault. If a defendant who commits this crime does not have an intent to harm the victim, the individual cannot be guilty of the offense.
In almost all states, consent is a defense to civil assault and battery. Some jurisdictions hold that in the case of mutual combat, consent will not suffice and either party may sue the other. Jurisdictions also differ on the question of whether consent is a defense to criminal assault and battery.
Consent must be given voluntarily in order to constitute a defense. If it is obtained by fraud or duress, or is otherwise unlawful, it will not suffice. When an act exceeds the scope of the given consent, the defense is not available. A person who participates in a football game implies consent to a certain amount of physical contact; however, the individual is not deemed to consent to contact beyond what is commonly permitted in the sport.
Generally, a person may use whatever degree of force is reasonably necessary for protection from bodily harm. The question of whether or not this defense is valid is usually determined by a jury. A person who initiates a fight cannot claim self-defense unless the opponent responded with a greater and unforeseeable degree of force. When an aggressor retreats and is later attacked by the same opponent, the defense may be asserted.
Deadly force may be justified if initially used by the aggressor. The situation must be such that a reasonable person would be likely to fear for his or her life. In some states, a person must retreat prior to using deadly force if the individual can do so in complete safety. A majority of states, however, allow a person to stand his or her ground even though there is a means of safe escape. Free Consultation
Whether the degree of force used is reasonable depends upon the circumstances. The usual test applied involves determining whether a reasonable person in a similar circumstance would respond with a similar amount of force. Factors such as age, size, and strength of the parties are also considered. Free Consultation
Defense of Others
Going to the aid of a person in distress is a valid defense, provided the defender is free from fault. In some states, the defender is treated as though he or she stands in the shoes of the person protected. The defender's right to claim defense of others depends upon whether the person protected had a justified claim of self-defense. In a minority of jurisdictions, the defense may be asserted if the defender reasonably believed the third party was in need of aid. Free Consultation
Defense of Property
Individuals may use a reasonable amount of force to protect their property. The privilege to defend one's property is more limited than that of self-defense because society places a lesser value on property than on the integrity of human beings. Deadly force is usually not permitted. In most states, however, deadly force might be justified if it is used to prevent or stop a felony. An owner of real property or a person who rightfully possesses it, such as a tenant, may use force against a trespasser. Generally, a request to leave the property must be made before the application of force, unless the request would be futile. The amount of force used must be reasonable, and, unless it is necessary for self-defense, the infliction of bodily harm upon an intruder is improper. Courts have traditionally been more liberal in allowing the use of force to protect one's dwelling. Recent cases, however, have indicated that there must be a threat to the personal safety of the occupants.
The states are divided on the question of whether a person who is legally entitled to property may use force to recover possession of it. In most jurisdictions, a landowner is not liable for assault and battery if the owner forcibly expels someone who is wrongfully on the property. The owner must not, however, use excessive force; and the fact that the person may not be held civilly liable does not relieve the owner of criminal liability. In some states, the use of force against a person wrongfully in possession of land is not permitted unless such person has tortiously dispossessed the actor or the actor's predecessor in title.
If possession of real or personal property is in dispute, the universal rule is that force cannot be used. The dispute must be settled by a court.
With respect to personal property, the general view is that an owner may not commit an assault or battery upon the wrongdoer in order to recover property. A majority of jurisdictions recognize the right of an owner in hot pursuit of stolen property to use a reasonable amount of force to retrieve it. In some states, stolen property may be taken back peaceably wherever it is found, even if it is necessary to enter another's premises. In all cases, the infliction of an unreasonable amount of harm will vitiate the defense.
Performance of Duty and Authority
A person may use reasonable force when it becomes necessary in the course of performing a duty. A police officer, for example, may use force when apprehending a criminal. Private citizens may also use reasonable force to stop a crime committed in their presence. Certain businesses, such as restaurants or nightclubs, are authorized to hire employees who may use reasonable force to remove persons who disturb other patrons. Court officers, such as judges, may order the removal of disruptive persons who interfere with their duties.
Persons with authority in certain relationships, such as parents or teachers, may use force as a disciplinary measure, provided they do not exceed the scope of their authority. Punishment may not be cruel or excessive.
The law considers an assault and battery to be an invasion of the personal security of the victim for which the wrongdoer is required to pay for damages. The determination of the amount of damages to which a victim might be entitled if a defendant is found civilly liable is usually made by a jury. Generally, a plaintiff is entitled to compensatory damages that compensate for injuries that are both directly and indirectly related to the wrong. Examples of compensatory damages include damages for pain and suffering, damages for medical expenses, and damages for lost earnings resulting from the victim's inability to work. Nominal damages, given although there is no harm at all, or merely a slight one, may also be awarded in an assault and battery action. Some jurisdictions allow the award of punitive damages. They are often given when the offense was committed wantonly or maliciously to punish the defendant for the wrongful act, and to deter others from engaging in similar acts in the future. The defendant might additionally be subject to criminal liability
If a defendant is found criminally liable, the punishment is imprisonment, a fine, or both. The amount of time a defendant must serve in prison depends upon the statute in the particular jurisdiction. When the offense is committed with an intent to murder or do serious harm, it is called aggravated assault and battery. An aggravated assault and battery is often committed with a dangerous weapon, and it is punishable as a felony in Texas.
Dallas Assault & Battery Attorneys Protecting the Rights of those Charged with Assault and Battery
The severity of the assault charges you face depends upon the circumstances surrounding your arrest. Unfortunately, the actual assault charges filed may not accurately reflect what actually happened. In these difficult times, careful consultation with a skilled Dallas assault lawyer can greatly improve your chances of a more favorable outcome.
At the Law Office of John Raggio, PLLC, located in Dallas, Texas and Fort Worth, our assault & battery defense lawyers provide aggressive criminal defense representation to clients throughout Dallas, including those charged with assault. To discuss your situation in a free consultation, call us at (214)453-0518 or contact us online.
Charged with Assault? We Can Help.
No one wants to believe that a small misunderstanding that ends in a drunken shoving match justifies assault charges, or that a heated argument at home can result in allegations of domestic violence. Regardless of how you see it, the law takes a very harsh view toward these types of scenarios. In fact, the consequences of assault charges are frequently beyond what most people expect.
We conduct thorough investigations to determine what really took place, review police reports and talk to all witnesses. While we will certainly consider plea negotiations if that is in your interests, we will not hesitate to take your case to trial if that is the best way to protect your rights and your freedom.
Your Very Freedom May be at Stake, Contact Us
Justified or not, being charged with assault is a serious matter you should not take lightly. To schedule an appointment with a dedicated assault & battery lawyer, call our Dallas, Texas, law office at (214)453-0518 or contact us online.
The Raggio Law Firm, P.C.
4925 Greenville Ave Suite 711
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