When you think about someone being assaulted, you probably think about them being hit, punched and kicked. When you envision an assault victim, you likely picture a bloody nose and blackened eyes, maybe even a missing tooth. It makes sense.
If someone without a visible bruise or scratch told you they had been assaulted earlier that day, you would probably assume they’d been pummelled in a place hidden by their clothes, which is why you couldn’t see the marks. But believe it or not, the definition of ‘Assault’ here in Michigan doesn’t always include physical violence.
A person can be ‘assaulted’ without ever being hit, or even touched!
Here in Michigan, Assault and Battery are usually charged together, although legally they’re considered to be different acts. What you probably think of as assault is actually battery. Battery requires some kind of unwanted or unwelcome contact, while assault doesn’t even require physical contact. That’s right – a person doesn’t have to be hit, punched or harmed in any way for it to count as assault.
Confused? You’re not alone. Under Michigan law, you can be charged with assault simply because you planned to batter someone, or tried to batter someone. Or even if that person was afraid (or was in imminent fear) that you would batter them. So as you can see, there’s no hitting, or any kind of touching required for you to be charged with assault in Michigan!
There are different types of assault here in Michigan.
Being charged with assault can mean several different things, depending on the type of assault you’re accused of. There is domestic assault, simple assault, aggravated assault, and felonious assault. Domestic assault, like the name implies, is when you’re accused of assaulting someone you live with, or are in a relationship with. Sometimes referred to as domestic abuse or domestic violence, domestic assault can be a hard allegation to fight.
Cops are trained to take the victim’s word for what happened. And if your spouse or partner lies about you to the cops, claiming that you threatened to hurt them, you can end up behind bars, and not allowed to go home when you get out. (We’ve handled loads of these types of cases in Grand Rapids, Saginaw, Lansing, Battle Creek and Oakland County.)
Different types of assault are punished in different ways.
Depending on the type of assault you’re accused of, you could end up facing just a few months in jail, or many years in prison. Simple assault is a misdemeanor that can get you up to 93 days in jail and a $500 fine. But felonious assault is a felony (like the name implies) and can earn you years in a prison cell and thousands in fines.
In order for an assault to count as ‘felonious’ there has to be a dangerous weapon involved. However, that doesn’t mean only ‘weapon’ in the traditional sense, like a gun or a knife. We’ve handled cases in Alma, Midland, Mount Pleasant and Caro, where the weapons used to hit or hurt someone were ashtrays, beer bottles and even potted plants!
Make sure you hire the best criminal defense attorney when charged with assault in Michigan!
Assault charges are no joke here in Michigan! From Grand Rapids to Port Huron, and Coldwater to Grayling, people who get accused of assault can end up behind bars because they made critical mistakes in handling their defense. (And because you don’t actually have to hit anyone to face these charges, it’s important your case be properly handled!)
So if you’re accused of assaulting someone, your first move should be to call The Kronzek Firm at 866 766 5245 and talk to one of our aggressive criminal defense team. We’re on call 24/7 for emergencies, and have decades of experience successfully handling assault cases all over the state of Michigan. We can help you too.