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police in bar after assault

Assault charges can significantly impact an individual's life. They can have severe consequences, even when they do not end in conviction. The mere accusation can strain your relationships, cause financial strain, and harm your reputation. If you are convicted, the consequences are more severe and can range from fines and probation to community service and even jail time.

A conviction can make it difficult to find employment, maintain custody of your children, or even obtain housing. Find out how to fight back against an assault charge.

Claim of Self-Defense

Self-defense is the most common type of defense when charged with assault. If you acted in self-defense, it is possible to have the charges dismissed or reduced. There are limitations to this type of defense. To fight against the assault charge, you must prove you used the necessary force in the situation. You should show you did not use more than necessary force to deal with the perceived danger.

You must also show you did not provoke the other person to attack you. You should not have set up the assault as an excuse to strike back. For self-defense to be effective, you must prove you believed you were in imminent danger. A criminal defense lawyer can help you build a strong case, increasing your chances of getting the best outcome.

Defense of Others

Defense of others is similar to self-defense but involves protecting others. To be successful, you must prove you acted to defend someone who was in imminent danger. You must show you used necessary force to protect them from harm. An experienced lawyer can help to determine if this applies to your case. Having witnesses to back your story will help your chances of getting a favorable outcome when fighting against an assault charge.

Defense of Property

Everyone has the right to protect their property from damage or theft, but the force used must be deemed necessary. You must show that you used reasonable force to protect your property. The force must be proportional to the threat. This type of defense tends to be more complicated. You should not cause bodily harm to someone when protecting your property. With the complexities involved, it is crucial to get the help of a competent lawyer.

Mental Competence 

You can fight back against an assault charge by proving a lack of mental state. If you can prove you were not in a mental state fit to commit the assault, you can fight the charges. You can argue you did not understand the nature of your actions or did not intend to cause harm. A favorable outcome depends on proving you did not act recklessly or intentionally. You must prove your mental state at the time of the offense prevented you from making a rational decision.

Another defense against assault is consent. This defense is common during sexual assault or physical contact sports charges. The defense depends on the argument that the victim gave informed and explicit consent. There are limitations to the defense. It is not valid if the victim is not able to give consent due to their mental state, age, and other factors. Courts scrutinize this defense closely. An experienced defense lawyer can help determine the viability of this defense.


Some people charged with assault did not want to do it. Duress is psychological pressure, force, coercion, or threats to compel someone to act. You can fight against an assault charge by claiming duress. The defense is applicable if you can prove you acted out of fear for your safety. You can use the defense if you were threatened with serious bodily harm or coerced to commit the assault. You must prove the threat was imminent or immediate and that you had no other options.


A necessity defense strategy contends that your actions were necessary to prevent significant danger or harm. The defendant must show their actions were necessary, as there was no alternative. You can use the defense if you use force to prevent someone from perpetrating a violent crime against yourself or others. You must be able to prove your actions were reasonable under the circumstances.

Assault charges can have far-reaching, long-term consequences. The different defenses can be valid depending on the circumstances. An experienced defense lawyer will help to determine the best option. If you are facing an assault charge, the prosecutor must prove guilt beyond reasonable doubt. The lawyer may also recommend other defenses, such as under the influence and entrapment. A good defense can help to clear you off any charges and guide you throughout the entire process.