It can happen to any student: a heated argument suddenly turns into a fistfight or a brawl. Sometimes the participants walk away with no more than a bloody nose or wounded pride. But if the police get involved, and you are arrested, taking those charges seriously is crucial, even if no one was seriously injured. An assault charge can have a detrimental and lasting impact on your future. If you’re a student arrested for fighting in New Hampshire, here’s what you need to know about the assault charges.
Simple assault is a misdemeanor that occurs when a person has intentionally or recklessly caused bodily injury to another person, intentionally made unwanted physical contact with another person, or negligently caused bodily injury to another person through the use of a deadly weapon. A Class A charge is punishable by up to one year in jail and up to $2,000 in fines. A Class B charge means you will face no jail time but up to $1,200 in fines.
If you and the other person involved in the altercation mutually agreed to fight, the charge would be a “violation.” A violation is not a misdemeanor and does not bring jail time, but you will face fines and probation.
Felony assault involves more severe actions and more severe consequences. Second-degree assault occurs when someone intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly causes serious bodily injury to another person, including strangulation. A person convicted of a Class B second-degree assault faces up to seven years of prison and fines of up to $4,000.
Like second-degree assault, first-degree assault occurs when someone causes intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly serious bodily injury to another person. However, it also applies when someone has intentionally caused physical harm to someone with a deadly weapon. This form of assault is a Class A felony. A conviction can bring up to 15 years in prison and fines of up to $4,000.
Consequences of an Assault Conviction
Even if you don’t receive jail time, you want to avoid having an assault or a violation charge on your record. If you are a legal adult, the charge will appear in any background search an employer or landlord might conduct and may curtail your options. It may also prevent you from obtaining or maintaining a scholarship or receiving certain professional licenses. You may also face disciplinary action from your school, including suspension or expulsion.
If you’ve been arrested for fighting at school, you should contact an experienced New Hampshire criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. Knowledgeable attorneys can help get the charges dropped, reduced to a lesser charge, or obtain the best possible outcome. The skilled attorneys at Tenn And Tenn, P.A. have successfully helped people defend against criminal charges throughout the state: Manchester, Concord, Nashua, Bedford, Derry, and beyond. Call 1-888-511-1010 for your free consultation today, or reach out online for a case evaluation.