New York Assault

Assault is a criminal offense related to intentionally or recklessly causing physical harm to another person. There are several different types of assault charges in New York Penal Law. There are special assault charges related to assaulting children, sexual assault, or using a vehicle to commit an assault. The assault charge will be more serious if you used a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument such as a gun, knife, or car. If during the assault you seriously injured the victim, you will be charged with a more serious assault offense. Furthermore, if your victim is in a protected class such as a police officer, paramedic, prosecutor, person over the age of 65 or person age of 11 or younger, the crime will be considered more severe. The punishment for the most serious type of assault is up to 25 years in prison. You could spend the rest of your life in prison if you have prior violent felony convictions. If you are in need of a criminal lawyer because you have been charged with any type of assault it is critical that you speak with an experienced New York assault lawyer who will listen to the facts of your case and who will aggressively defend you against the charges.

The attorneys at the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates have decades of experience representing clients who have been charged with assault and other serious crimes such as domestic violence, DWI, grand larceny, and sex crimes. Find out what we can do for you by contacting us to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case.

Types of assault

Under New York Penal Law there are several different assault offenses including assault, reckless assault of a child, vehicular assault, gang assault and sexual assault.

Assault. There are 3 degrees of assault: assault in the third degree, assault in the second degree and assault in the first degree. N.Y. Pen. Law §§ 120.00, 120.05 and 120.10

Assault in the third degree is a class A misdemeanor. To be charged with assault in the third degree you must have intended to cause physical injury to another person, and you must have in fact caused injury to that person or to a third person. You may also face a charge of third degree assault if you recklessly cause physical injury to another person, or if with criminal negligence you caused physical injury to another person using a deadly weapon. N.Y. Pen. Law § 120.00. Typically, this is the charge you will face if you assault someone and the injuries are minor.

Assault in the second degree is a class D felony. There are several different factors that if present would raise an assault to the level of assault in the second degree. For example, if you intended for the victim to suffer serious physical injuries and the victim did indeed suffer serious physical injuries as a result of the assault, you could face a charge of assault in the second degree. N.Y. Pen. Law § 120.05. . Under New York law, the term "serious physical injuries" is defined as an injury that creates a substantial risk of death, that causes death, or that causes serious disfigurement or impairment. N.Y. Pen. Law § 10.00(10).

Another factor that could raise an assault to the level of assault in the second degree is if you used a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument. A dangerous instrument is defined as any object that could be used to cause serious physical injury. N.Y. Pen. Law § 10.00(13).

If you assault a police officer, nurse, firefighter, paramedic, prosecutor or any other official, you will automatically face a charge of at least assault in the second degree if that assault prevented the official from performing his or her official duties.

Furthermore, if you assault a person who is 65 years old or older and you are more than 10 years younger than that person, or you assault a person who is 11 years old or younger and you are at least 18 years old, you will face a second degree assault charge.

Assault in the first degree is a class B felony. It carries a possible prison sentence of up to 25 years in prison. You will face a charge of assault in the first degree if you used a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument to cause serious physical injury to another person; if you permanently disabled another person; if with depraved indifference to human life you put another person at risk of death and doing so you seriously injured that person; or if while committing a felony you caused serious injury to another person.

Reckless assault of a child is a class D felony. In order to face this charge you must be at least 18 years old. This type of assault involves causing serious injury to the brain of a child who is less than 5 years old by shaking, slamming, or throwing that child. N.Y. Pen. Law § 120.02. For example in the case of People v. Marsh, 954 N.Y.S.2d 474 (2012) the defendant was charged with reckless assault of a child and child endangerment after throwing a 15 month old child in a crib, causing her to hit her head. The child suffered brain damage.

Reckless assault of a child by a day care provider is a class E felony. This assault involves an owner or employee of a day care provider recklessly causing serious physical injury to a child who is less than 11 years old by shaking. N.Y. Pen. Law § 120.01. It is important to note that the standard for reckless assault of a child by a day care provider is different from the standard for reckless assault of a child.

Vehicular assault in the second degree is a class E felony. You will face a charge of vehicular assault in the second degree if you drive you vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol and seriously injure another person. N.Y. Pen. Law § 120.03

Vehicular assault in the first degree is a class D felony. This offense is similar to vehicular assault in the second degree except that you also

  • have a blood alcohol level of at least .18
  • have a license that was suspended or revoked in another state
  • have a prior conviction for operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Cause serious injury to more than one person
  • Have a prior conviction for vehicular assault
  • Have a prior conviction of vehicular homicide
  • Have a child who is 15 years old or younger in the car with you

N.Y. Pen. Law § 120.04

Aggravated vehicular assault is a class C felony. You will face a charge of aggravated vehicular assault if you commit the crime of vehicular assault in the second degree while driving recklessly, and you also

  • have a blood alcohol level of at least .18
  • have a license that was suspended or revoked in another state
  • have a prior conviction for operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Cause serious injury to more than one person
  • Have a prior conviction for vehicular assault
  • Have a prior conviction of vehicular homicide
  • Have a child who is 15 years old or younger in the car with you

N.Y. Pen. Law § 120.04-a

Gang assault in the second degree is a class C felony. You will face this charge if you have the intent to cause injury to another person and you in fact cause serious physical injury to another person with the aid of at least 2 other people. N.Y. Pen. Law § 120.06

Gang assault in the first degree is a class B felony. You will face this charge if you have the intent to cause serious injury to another person and you in fact cause serious physical injury to another person with the aid of at least 2 other people. N.Y. Pen. Law § 120.07

Sexual assault is a general term to describe several different sex offenses including forcible touching, sexual abuse, criminal sexual act, sexual misconduct, sexual conduct against child, female genital mutilation, and facilitating a sexual offense with a controlled substance.

Consequences of an Assault Conviction

If you are convicted of an assault crime, your sentence may include incarceration, a fine and probation. Whether or not you are sent to jail depends largely on the seriousness of the crime of which you are convicted and your prior criminal record.

Prison and Fines
  • Class A misdemeanor. The maximum possible sentence is 1 year in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. The following assault offense is a class A misdemeanor: assault in the third degree.
  • Class E felony. The maximum possible sentence is 4 years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000. The following assault offenses are class E felonies: reckless assault of a child by a child day care provider, aggravated assault upon a person less than eleven and vehicular assault in the second degree.
  • Class D felony. The maximum possible sentence is 7 years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000. The following assault offenses are class D felonies: assault in the second degree, reckless assault of a child, and vehicular assault in the first degree.
  • Class C felony . The maximum possible sentence is 15 years in prison and a fine of up to $15,000. The following assault offense is a class C felony: gang assault in the second degree
  • Class B felony. The maximum possible sentence is 25 years in prison and a fine of up to $30,000. The following assault offenses are class B felonies: assault in the first degree and gang assault in the first degree.
Probation

If you are convicted of assault your sentence may include probation. The term of probation will be 3 years for a misdemeanor conviction or 5 years for a felony conviction. For sex offenses the probation terms are twice as long. If your sentence includes both prison and probation, you will serve the terms concurrently. This means that if your sentence is 4 years in prison and 5 years of probation, you will serve 4 years of probation while you are in prison and the remaining year once you are released.

While serving your probation sentence you will be subject to many rules. If you break any of the rules a judge could revoke your probation and resentence you to prison. The rules will include that you cannot commit another crime, you must have a job, you must not associate with disreputable people, you must not patronize disreputable places, you must not drink alcohol excessively, you must not use illegal drugs, and you must support your family. In addition, you will be required to report to your probation officer on the regular basis.

Post-Release Supervision

If convicted of assault part of your sentence will likely include a term of post-release supervision of up to 5 years. Like probation, while you serve your term of post-release supervision there will be several rules that you must follow. If you violate any of the terms of your post-release supervision you will receive a revocation hearing before a judge. Based on the evidence presented, the judge may allow you to continue with the post-release supervision with the terms undisturbed, require you to go back to jail for a period and then return to post-release supervision status, or require you to return to prison to complete your original sentence plus additional time for violating your post-release supervision.

Fees and Restitution

In addition being ordered to pay fine, you will also have to pay fees and restitution. The amount of restitution will depend on the losses suffered by the victim as a result of your assault. For example, if you injured your victim you may be ordered to pay the medical expenses.

Orders of protection

As part of the criminal process the prosecutor may request and the judge may grant an order of protection in favor of the victim. An order of protection is designed to keep the victim safe by limiting your actions. For example, an order of protection may state that you are not permitted to go near the victim, the victim's children and the victim's place of employment. If you live with the victim, you may be ordered to move. If you violate an order of protection, you could face additional criminal charges.

Contact the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates

If you have been charged with any type of assault offense, it is important that you immediately seek experienced legal guidance. The potential consequences of being convicted of assault involves spending years in prison and paying significant fines. The staff at the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates has years of experience successfully defending clients in New York criminal courts who have been charged with misdemeanors and felonies such as assault in the first degree, assault in the second degree, menacing, reckless endangerment, stalking, rape, and child endangerment. Contact us at 1-800-NY-NY-LAW (1-800-696-9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We serve those accused of assault in the following locations: the Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Manhattan, Nassau County, Queens, Staten Island, Suffolk County and Westchester County.

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