Simple Assault Attorney in North Brunswick NJ
Defending Simple Assault Charges in North Brunswick Municipal Court
North Brunswick is surrounded by busy businesses, towns, and roads. Located just a stone’s throw from Route 1 and just north of New Brunswick, the town boasts more than 40,000 residents, many of whom want nothing more than to kick back and relax and enjoy their time off. Often the intention is to relax, but for any number of reasons a fun night out or cozy night in can be disrupted by facts and circumstances both in and out of your control. In the heat of the moment or under the influence of drugs or liquor, your judgement may not be within keeping with the confines of the law. If you engage in fighting with an unruly patron at a local watering hole, get into an altercation at a sports game or another event, have a tussle on the side of the road after being in an accident, engage in a fight with your boyfriend or girlfriend or their ex, or any other situation for that matter, you can be charged with simple assault under N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1(a). What seems like a relatively minor criminal infraction for a disorderly persons offense can escalate into more problems than you realize. For simple assault in North Brunswick, you could be facing jail if convicted. The attorneys in our Middlesex County criminal law firm routinely represent people charged with simple assault in North Brunswick Municipal Court and we have achieved favorable results on behalf of clients for over a decade. A member of our defense team is here to provide you with answers and additional information regarding your North Brunswick simple assault charges. We offer free consultations around the clock. Simply call (732) 659-9600 for yours today.
North Brunswick Simple Assault Offenses
Regardless of whether the alleged victim in a simple assault case is someone you know, a relative, a friend, or a perfect stranger, the charge is common and liberally applied in a variety of situations. Realistically, the officer who is called to investigate the fight or incident will have no idea who started it and may charge you with simple assault, a disorderly persons offense. Law enforcement or even private citizens can file complaints under N.J.S.A. 2c:12-1a when a person:
1) causes bodily injury,
2) causes a person to be in fear of immediate injury,
3) attempts to cause an injury, or
4) causes bodily injury negligently with a deadly weapon.
2c:12-1a Penalty if Convicted in North Brunswick Court
If the state proves simple assault, the jail time exposure is up to 180 days (6 months) and the possible fine goes up to $1,000, compared with the maximum $500 for a petty disorderly persons charge.
At the very least, you can be charged with the petty disorderly persons offense of mutual fighting for engaging in a fight instead of walking away. Even though you may not be to blame for initiating the fight, and most would understand your actions, there is jail exposure associated with this offense. If the North Brunswick Municipal Court judge finds you guilty, you technically could be sentenced to Middlesex County Jail for up to 30 days. The fine maximum is $500 as noted above.
How do People get Charged with Simple Assault in North Brunswick?
All persons in New Jersey are subject to the laws of this state. The accused person’s standing in the community makes no difference in charging them with a violation of the law. Ordinary citizens, neighbors, teachers, gas station attendants, service workers, front liners, military personnel, students, parents, and even police officers are all responsible for obeying state laws. In keeping with that, all persons must demonstrate self control in countless situations but more importantly, in circumstances involving assault.
As an example, you may recall a North Brunswick police officer who was charged and pleaded guilty to simple assault. He was charged with assault in connection with actions taken at the Golden Rail Tavern on Easton Avenue. It was of no significance that he was off duty at the time of the offense as he has the same obligation as you and me to act accordingly. Unfortunately, sometimes, the line between what is permissible and what is criminal can be blurred.
Is Self Defense a way to get Simple Assault Charges Dropped?
Despite the fact that you may not have even initiated the fight, successfully arguing self-defense in a simple assault case can prove difficult, especially if you “won” the fight in question. The truth is that in most cases in which two people voluntarily enter into a fight, the court can find you both guilty if you had the opportunity to leave or retreat but didn’t. In a simple assault case, what you perceive as an act of defending yourself may be deemed an inappropriate or excessive reaction by the court.
For example, you are at a North Brunswick pub and a person comes up to you and pushes you to the ground. You sit on the ground for a moment stunned, and the assailant stands back and takes no steps in your direction. Anger and embarrassment gets the best of you and you get up, lunge at the person, tackling him to the ground. You get one good swing in, cracking him in the jaw, teaching him what it feels like to be given a dose of his own medicine. Is this self defense? While what was done to you was patently wrong, your reaction to the offense may not be considered self defense. Self defense in New Jersey is more easily disproved than in other states because you have a duty to retreat. Essentially, this duty means that you cannot react with violence if you can safely get away.
In the scenario above, the question becomes whether or not the assailant took another step in assaulting you. You might be surprised to learn that the obligation was on you to walk away at that time if possible. If you were not able to walk away, you could only use the force necessary in protecting yourself and the same force with which you were assaulted. Think about it this way, you cannot bring a gun to a fist fight. Regardless, the defense can be asserted and other solutions can be achieved in simple assault cases. A good criminal defense lawyer can use multiple strategies to reduce or mitigate the punishment you face.
Need a Local North Brunswick Simple Assault Defense Lawyer
An arrest in North Brunswick for simple assault will be placed on a summons, unless it involves domestic violence. The summons will list the date upon which you must appear in North Brunswick Municipal Court. As soon as you receive the charge, call our office for further assistance about what your simple assault case could entail and how we can help you with experienced defense representation. Our criminal lawyers have represented scores of people in charged with simple assault in North Brunswick just like you. We know what works, what doesn’t, and how the law can be used to your benefit. Let us take the guesswork out of the process and get straight answers when you need them. Contact our office for a free consultation today if you have been charged with simple assault in North Brunswick. (732) 659-9600.