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Domestic Violence Charge-You Need Legal Representation

Posted Wednesday, April 22, 2020 by Andrew Charles Huff

A criminal charge of Assault is a matter that must be taken very seriously regardless of the specific allegations or whether you believe in your innocence. Such a case depends on the specific allegations and whether classified as a misdemeanor or felony, an assault is always considered a violent crime in the eyes of the law.

In all cases of assault and especially domestic violence allegations, there is a great deal of pressure on police and prosecutors to prosecute violent crimes to the fullest extent. And as always, prosecuting attorneys have vast resources at their disposal so it is critical you have an experienced and knowledgeable criminal defense attorney on your side.

What is Fourth Degree Assault?

In Washington, there are four different degrees of assault. They are Assault in the First Degree, Second Degree, Third Degree, and Fourth Degree, depending on the alleged defendant’s intent, how the assault was committed, and the results of the assault.

The most commonly charged assault offense is Assault in the Fourth Degree, which is consistent in most domestic violence cases and is also the least serious assault charge. This essentially covers any unwanted touching of another person.

Domestic Violence and Fourth Degree Assault

An assault will be charged as an act of domestic violence when the alleged victim is of the same family, household, domestic partner or housemate as the defendant.

What is the Basis for Arrest?

A mere allegation of offensive touching by an ordinary person is needed and no proof or evidence of injury to the alleged victim is required. Police called to the scene will make an arrest even if there is only the slightest evidence that an assault took place. Many assault allegations occur between couples going through a divorce, child custody dispute or dealing with issues of infidelity. One party might accuse the other of assault in order to gain an advantage or to punish them for the perceived wrongdoing, when no assault actually occurred.

Is Assault a Felony?

An assault allegation of first, second and third degrees are felonies and punished by much stiffer penalties.

If you have been charged with assault in the 4th degree, the possible penalties are significant and I strongly encourage you to call me at 206-729-3477 to discuss your case.

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