Skip to main content

Can a person be charged and convicted of assault without the plantiff being at trail?

Houston, TX |

Can a person be chaged and convicted of assault without the plantiff being at trail?

+ Read More

Attorney answers 2


charged? yes. Getting charged has nothing to do with the complainant (plaintiff) really.

As far as getting convicted at trial if the complainant does not show up, that is a different story. It really depends on what other evidence and witnesses they have. If there is no evidence other than that particular individual, you would likely prevail since you have a right to confront your accusers in court.


Mr. Tuthill is right; you can pretty much be charged for (that is "accused of") anything. Whether or not you can be convicted of an assault without the accuser/complaining witness being at trial is an enitrely different matter dependent on the facts of the case.

Thanks to the creativity of prosecutors (and the approval of trial and appellate judges), in assault cases, the State can, depending on the circumstances, use the following at trial:

- 911 calls (statements made by the accuser/complaining witness to a law enforcement agent)
- Statements made by the accuser/complaining witness to police at the scene
- Statements made by the accused to police at the scene
- Observations of the police officers at the scene (including photographs they have taken
- Other witnesses to the incident

(This list is not exclusive; other evidence can be introduced at trial depending on whether or not it complies with the Rules of Evidence and US/Texas Constitutions.)

This is a long way of saying that the State can make their case on an assault (that you intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly caused the accuser pain/bodily injury) without having the accuser at trial.

You should speak to your attorney if you want to discuss this further as to how this is likely to play out in your case.

Disclaimer: This answer is provided as a public service and as a general response to a general question, it is not meant, and should not be relied upon as specific legal advice, nor does it create an attorney-client relationship.