Assault charges are very serious criminal cases. An assault arrest, even prior to a conviction, can have earth-shattering consequences. Job prospects, security clearances, a level playing field in family law matters – these are all relevant concerns. Even though a person is presumed innocent, it doesn’t feel that way once the State has brought charges against you.
Arrested for Assault?
One of the biggest challenges is fighting the No Contact Order once a person is arrested for Assault 4 with the tag of domestic violence. The cost to the person accused, as well as the entire family, can be overwhelming. If you are arrested for assault against a family member, friend, or roommate, you will be required to stay away from the victim—even if the victim lives in your home or apartment. The prosecutor and judge do not care whether you have no other place to stay. Any attempt to return to the home or have contact with the victim will likely result in an additional criminal charge. Additionally, the collateral consequences of a No Contact Order are huge. Once a NCO is entered, there is an automatic firearms prohibition, which is highly relevant to members of the military.
Did the alleged a Assault involve a family member?
Often, assault charges that involve family members are misunderstandings. Arguments might get out of hand and someone throws something, slaps another, or shoves a family member. All of those behaviors can be considered assault. Once the police arrive, if an assault has occurred, law enforcement must arrest the alleged perpetrator.
Obtain counsel early in the process
Washington law requires a mandatory arrest in most domestic situations where an assault or threat of assault has taken place. At the same time, a No Contact Order will be put in place and the alleged person is not allowed to return to the home or location where the victim lives. However, in rare circumstances, this can be avoided if you have legal counsel involved early in the process. It is unusual but you should always contact an experienced criminal defense as soon as law enforcement is involved and, ideally, before the arrest has been made.
For more information regarding Assault charges, click below.