If you’ve been accused of assault, domestic, or another violent crime in Iowa, you need an Iowa assault attorney. A conviction or guilty plea could affect your employment and make it harder for you to find a job in the future. Landlords might not be willing to rent to you, making it harder for you to get an apartment or find office space.
Des Moines Assault Lawyers
At Clark and Sears Law, PLLC, we defend the rights and liberties of good people who are accused of bad things. A good Iowa assault attorney might be able to save you from paying thousands in fines and spending years in prison, away from your family.
Get out of trouble and get back to life. Call Katherine Sears at Clark and Sears Law, PLLC, now at (515) 491 6128 to set up a free consultation. A receptionist is available 24/7 to take your call.
The criminal defense lawyers at Clark and Sears Law, PLLC, are based in Des Moines and Ankeny and represent defendants throughout Polk County and the rest of Iowa.
Iowa assault defined
Many people feel indignant when charged because they “didn’t even hit” the other person.
You don’t have to leave a mark or even strike someone at all to be charged with this.
An assault is any act intended to cause harmful, painful, injurious or offensive contact to another person. “Hitting” is an assault, but so is simply grabbing someone’s arm. Spitting on them, although not necessarily harmful, painful, or injurious, is typically considered “offensive contact.”
An assault can also be doing something to make someone else think you’re about to cause them harmful, painful, injurious, or offensive contact. Drawing your fist back as if you might hit someone is an assault even if you never touch them at all.
Finally, an assault can be pointing a gun at someone or “displaying a weapon in a threatening manner.”
Types of assault
- Domestic Assault
- Simple assault: simple misdemeanor
- Causing bodily injury or mental illness: serious misdemeanor
- With intent to inflict a serious injury: aggravated misdemeanor
- Causing serious injury (when you didn’t intend to cause serious injury): Class “D” felony.
- While using an object to penetrate someone else’s genitalia or anus: Class “C” felony.
What is “bodily injury?”
For purposes of Iowa charges, “bodily” injury can be almost anything — a bruise, a scratch, a cut — so long as the State can convince a jury beyond a reasonable doubt that it’s an injury and that you caused it.
What is “serious injury?”
Per Iowa Code 702.18, “serious injury” is:
- Disabling mental illness
- Bodily injury that does any of these things:
- Creates a substantial risk of death.
- Causes serious permanent disfigurement.
- Causes protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ.
- Any injury to a child that requires surgical repair and necessitates the administration of general anesthesia
Penalties for assault
The potential punishment you could be facing if convicted of an assault crime varies with the type of assault and with your prior record.
You could be facing jail time and fines.
Your assault lawyer can help you determine whether you’re eligible for a deferred judgment.
Defenses to assault
If you used only a reasonable amount of force to stop someone else from using unlawful force against you or against another person (or against property,) you might have a self-defense or “justification” defense that could prevent conviction.
Sports and other activities
If what you’re doing is a reasonably forseeable part of a consensual (non-criminal) sport or a social activity and doesn’t create an unreasonable risk of serious injury or breach of the peace, the incident is not assault.
Defense lawyers for assault charges in Des Moines, Polk County, Ankeny, Ames, Johnston, West Des Moines, Waukee, Saylorville, Bondurant, Altoona, Clive, Grimes, Pleasant Hill, Story County, Boone County, Marshall County, Dallas County, Jasper County, Madison County, Warren County, Marion County, Wapello County, Davis County, Ottumwa, Bloomfield, Iowa City, Council Bluffs, and the rest of Iowa.
This blog post is for informational purposes only and should not be relied on as legal advice. Consult with a licensed Iowa assault attorney in your jurisdiction. Reading this site doesn’t create an attorney-client relationship. If you want to talk to us about your Iowa assault charges, please contact us at (515) 491 6128 and we’ll set up a time to talk.