There are many different ways that people in Pennsylvania resolve their disputes. There are some who will simply let things go and walk away from conflict. Others may want to work through their disagreements through discussion. However, sometimes situations of high conflict become very emotional and it may be difficult to keep those emotions in check. If this occurs there are times when people will hit others involved in the conflict. When this occurs people may be charged with assault.
There are different levels of assault though depending on what occurs. There are simple assault charges and aggravated assault. Simple assault charges are the lesser of the two assault charges. People can be charged with this offense if certain circumstances are met. These circumstances include when people intentionally attempt to cause bodily harm to another; people negligently caused bodily harm to another with a deadly weapon; attempted to intimidate another by threatening serious bodily harm and other situations.
Simple assault is a second degree misdemeanor unless the fight is mutual in which case it is a third degree misdemeanor. These offenses could result in jail time and fines for those convicted of them. People who are charged with assault may have defenses available to them and are presumed innocent. Prosecutors must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the person committed the assault.
There are many situations when other people become upset with others. Sometimes in order to resolve the problem people resort to hitting or threatening to harm others and many people are charged with assault each year. While both the immediate and long-term consequences can be serious, there are ways people could avoid these serious consequences even after being charged. Experienced attorneys understand the potential defenses and may be a useful resource.