Assault is defined as the intention to apply force to someone else, directly or indirectly, without that person’s consent. No injury is required to prosecute for assault. There are degrees of severity ranging from common assault and assault with a weapon to various forms of sexual assault. Recent changes to federal law have eliminated the possibility of house arrest as a sentence for certain types of assault, thereby increasing the possibility of jail or prison time.
Conviction on assault charges can result in imprisonment and penalties, along with a criminal record that will follow you for the rest of your life. That’s why it is essential to remain silent when arrested on assault charges and engage the services of experienced criminal defence lawyers as soon as possible. At Bulwark Law, we have the skills, experience, and reputation for providing high-quality legal services with compassion and rigour.
Facing Assault Charges in Calgary?
A criminal prosecution can impact every aspect of your life, financial security, and your family’s stability. At Bulwark Law, our lawyers are committed to providing our clients with strategic defences to any prosecution for assault. Our lawyers strive to defend our clients with a combination of legal knowledge, an understanding of the criminal prosecution process, and negotiating skills. We focus on having criminal charges withdrawn or minimized, but if we need to, we have the trial experience necessary to defend your case before a judge and jury properly.
Types of Assault Charges
Assault can be charged in several ways with varying degrees of severity and consequences.
- Simple Assault: Simple assault is the attempt to cause physical harm to another person. Assault can include verbal threats as well as violent gestures. Simple assault does not require a jury trial and can be tried by a judge alone. Penalties can include a fine, probation and/or jail time.
- Aggravated Assault: Unlike simple assault, aggravated assault can include using a weapon and causing serious physical harm to another. Depending on the degree of severity, and any consequential injury, a person convicted of aggravated assault can be sentenced to up to 14 years in prison.
- Assault with a Weapon: When a weapon is used to threaten or inflict bodily harm, the charge is assault with a weapon. Depending on the severity of the threat, and any consequential injury, a person convicted of assault with a weapon can be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison.
- Sexual Assault: When non-consensual sexual touching is combined with threats or acts of violence or a betrayal of trust and authority, sexual assault can be charged. Depending on the circumstances and any consequential injury, a person convicted of sexual assault can be sentenced to life in prison.
- Assaulting an Officer: Any threat or physical assault on a police officer can be prosecuted as assaulting an officer. To deter others, sentences imposed for assaulting an officer are severe, with a maximum punishment of up to 14 years in prison, depending on the circumstances.
How a Calgary Assault Lawyer Can Help You
It is a mistake to try and represent yourself when facing the full force of the Crown’s authority. Your best option is to remain silent and hire an experienced criminal defence lawyer right away to protect your rights and start constructing a strong defence. An experienced criminal defence lawyer can:
- Investigate the police and challenge their methods, including how they secured evidence and witness testimony
- Negotiate with prosecutors
- Develop an overall defence strategy
- Prepare to go to trial, if necessary
Assault cases can be defended in several ways before trial. Simple assault without any injuries to the complainant might result in referral to the Alternative Measures Program. This program provides community service in exchange for dropping the charges. Skilled lawyers can negotiate this outcome and help you complete all requirements for full compliance.
Another pre-trial possibility is a peace bond. This is an agreement, usually a year, in which you promise to “keep the peace” with the help of counselling, restraining orders, and no-contact provisions with the complainant. The benefit of a peace bond is that you will not have a criminal record if you comply with its terms and successfully stay out of trouble for the duration of it.
If your assault charge proceeds to trial, the assault lawyers at Bulwark Law will challenge the facts and evidence, including how it was collected, and rigorously advocate for you.
Prosecutors are more likely to consider withdrawing charges or charging lesser offences when facing defence lawyers with a credible record of success. You need a rigorous defence from the very beginning of any criminal prosecution. Your future, and that of your family, are on the line.
Contact Bulwark Law Today
When facing criminal assault charges, your freedom and future are at stake. That is why you should retain Bulwark Law. Our skilled and compassionate lawyers have a strong reputation amongst judges and prosecutors in Calgary and throughout Alberta. We are known for our fierce representation with integrity, along with our full understanding of criminal law and procedure. We work hard to get the best results for our clients. Call 403 678 7360 or complete the contact form to arrange your free initial consultation.