First degree criminal assault is charged when great bodily harm is inflicted or if the assault with deadly force is committed against a peace officer.
The sentence for a first degree offense is imprisonment for not more than 20 years and payment of a fine of not more than $30,000.
Second Degree Assault
Second degree assault is charged if a dangerous weapon is used as part of the offense. A person accused of a second degree assault may face up to 7 years in prison and a fine of not more than $14,000.
If a persons uses a dangerous weapon AND inflicts substantial bodily harm the potential penalties are increased to not more than ten years and to payment of a fine of not more than $20,000.
Third Degree Assault
Third degree assault is charged when a person assaults another and inflicts substantial bodily harm or assaults a minor. This offense carries with it a penalty of imprisonment for not more than five years and payment of a fine of not more than $10,000.
Moreover, it is also a felony for anyone to assault a child under the age of four years old. The sentence for such an offense is imprisonment for not more than five years and payment of a fine of not more than $10,000.
Fourth Degree Assault
Assaulting a police officer may also result in an assault charge if that officer is effecting a lawful arrest or executing any other duty imposed by law. A fourth degree assault is a gross misdemeanor with possible penalties of one year in jail and a fine of not more than $3,000. If cathe assault inflicts demonstrable bodily harm, the person is guilty of a felony and may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than three years or to payment of a fine of not more than $6,000, or both.
It is also a crime to assault fire fighters and emergency medical personnel in the commission of their duties. If convicted, a defendant may face felony charges and up to two years in prison and a fine of not more than $4,000.
Fifth Degree Assault
A fifth degree assault is a misdemeanor if it is a first offense punishable by up to a 90 days in jail and/or a $1000 fine. A fifth degree assault may be charged if a person
commits an act with intent to cause fear in another of immediate bodily harm or death; or
intentionally inflicts or attempts to inflict bodily harm upon another.
A second offense on the same victim within five years following discharge from the sentence on the first offense may be charged with a gross misdemeanor and may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than one year and to payment of a fine of not more than $3,000.
If convicted of a second fifth degree assault after August 1, 1992, that person may no longer own or possess a pistol. Any person who possesses a pistol in violation of this paragraph is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.
Additional resources provided by the author
Author: Maury D. Beaulier is a recognized leader in criminal defense in assault cases. He can be reached from his website at http://www.criminal-law.tv