Los Angeles Criminal Assault Charges - Penal Code Section 240 and 241
In Los Angeles, assault is filed as a separate count in a domestic violence situation. In certain circumstances, the Defendant may have gotten into an argument with his or her spouse or significant other, and during that argument, one of the parties may have acted in such a fashion that may be interpreted as an unlawful attempt to commit a harmful injury upon the person of another. When the Defendant is charged with assault pursuant to Penal Code sections 240 and 241, the prosecuting attorney must prove the following 5 elements of the crime to satisfy their burden:
1.Defendant's act was a direct and probable result in the application of force to a another;
2. Defendant's act was willfully;
3. Defendant was aware of the facts that would lead a reasonable person to realize the defendant's act would directly and probably result in the application of force to another;
4. Defendant had the present ability to use unlawful force; &
5. Defendant did not act in self defense or other.
Los Angeles Prosecutors Burden in a Criminal Assault Case - California Penal Code 240 & 241
The prosecuting attorney must prove that the assault was purposeful and not accidental and was not a product of self-defense or defense of another person. For example, in a domestic violence case, if the defendant was attempting to protect a family member because he or she knew the alleged victim was going to hurt the family member, the defendant's act may have been for the defense of another. Another example would be during a heated domestic violence argument, an object accidentally flies out of the defendant's hands as the defendant is gesturing with his or her hands. In such instances, the Defendant needs a qualified Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer to prepare an adequate defense for the Defendant.
Defenses to the Crime of Assault - California Penal Code 240 & 241.
In California, the prosecuting attorney is not required to prove that the defendant intended to break the law or to hurt someone else or gain any advantage. The prosecuting attorney needs to show that the defendant intended to touch someone willfully and is not required to prove that the defendant actually intended to use force against someone when he or she acted. To satisfy the elements of assault as defined under California Penal Code 240 and 241, the prosecuting lawyer does not need to prove that someone was actually injured by the defendant's act. The prosecuting attorney needs to prove that the defendant intended to cause the slightest touching in a rude or angry manner.
Some applicable defenses are:
1. Defendant acted in self-defense;
2. Defendant acted to defend another person;
3. Defendant's conduct was not willful;
4. Defendant's act was not likely to cause a touching;
5. Defendant's act was accidental;
6. The victim lied or exaggerated.
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Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorney
Law Firm of Tyler & Wilson, LLP
5455 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 1925
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