Difference Between Assaulting An Officer And A Regular Person in Rockville
While assault on an officer is still categorized under assault, it will often carry more serious penalties than if you were to assault a regular person. Additionally, increase charges may apply if other members of the protected class such as doctors, ambulance drivers, and fire department members are assaulted. If you are accused of assaulting any of these or another class of ‘police officer’ therefore, it is imperative you consult with a Rockville assault lawyer as soon as possible to begin building a defense. Below is more information on the difference between how charges of assault a police officer are treated differently.
Assault on a Police Officer in Rockville
An ‘Assault on a Police Officer’ charge is different from other charges in that the government actually has to demonstrate that the victim suffered an injury. Additionally, there are also enhanced penalties and a negative stigma associated with these charges. The court often finds it more offensive to assault an officer who is acting within his or her employment capacity by enforcing the law, in the community.
How Is Assaulting A Police Officer Different From Assaulting A Lay Person?
Assaulting a police officer is different from assaulting a lay person because the police officer has a level of authority that is granted to them to enforce the law. When they are acting in that capacity and they are assaulted, the court often sees this as a prosecutable offense. When somebody is charged with assaulting a police officer what they can expect is that it is unusual for defenses, such as self-defense or mutual affray, to be considered applicable.
It is very unlikely that an officer will testify in court that they were the initial aggressor in an assault situation or that they were aggressive to the point where a person was forced to act in self-defense. These defense arguments are often much more difficult to present in an ‘Assault on a Police Officer’ case.
Beyond that, in typical assault cases there will often be situations where people who are testifying against each other might have bias or might have some credibility issues to keep their testimony from being relied on by the finder of fact.
In assault on police officer cases this is very unusual. Police officers usually do not know the person they are charging prior to the charging event. They normally don’t have a history with that individual. It is unlikely that there will be testimony that the officer had some kind of bias towards the individual that they are charging which makes bias defenses irrelevant in most of these cases.