Prosecution of Rockville Assault on an Officer Charges
Assaulting a police officer can include many actions including resisting, interfering, or intimidating an officer. If you are accused, your case will likely be treated very seriously and could result in serious penalties including fines and jail time.
Below is information on the prosecution of APO cases, and what elements will need to be proven in order for you to be considered guilty. To learn more or to begin building your defense schedule a consultation with a Rockville assault lawyer today.
What Elements Does a Prosecutor Need to Prove in An APO Case?
The prosecutor needs to prove that the officer was assaulted by the defendant and that the police officer was injured by the assault.
The injury can be minor or major as long as there is some kind of injury that the officer suffered. Assault can be anything from an un-consented touching, to threat or use of deadly force. What the prosecution will need to prove varies greatly depending on the type of assault.
What Evidence is Typically Used?
To put together a case against the defendant for assaulting a police officer, prosecutors will use evidence ranging from the officer’s injuries to testimony and statements made by the officer or other witnesses who were present at the scene.
What Are Some Mitigating Factors?
The mitigating factors that are available would probably be whether the person had a prior criminal background, the extent of the injuries the officer allegedly suffered, whether the officer had permanent injuries or non-permanent injuries, whether the officer wants to proceed on the charges, and whether the officer might have used aggressive force or excessive force in trying to interact with the defendant originally. These are the kinds of things that are commonly referred to as mitigating factors in Assault on an Officer cases.
What Makes Defending APO Charges So Difficult?
APO charges are difficult to defend for a number of reasons, however, the primary reason is that the people who are prosecuting these cases are the state’s attorneys in the same county where the officer is working. They usually have a close relationship with the officer because they have usually worked with the officer before. They are unlikely to walk away from the charges as opposed to in situations where they are charging an assault where only a lay person is involved and they may not have a separate relationship. Due to a Prosecutor’s relationship with the officer, they may be less likely to drop the charges.
Additionally, defenses in assault on police officer cases can be very difficul because the type of defense that we usually present in assault cases may not be available in these situations. It is very unusual for an officer to present evidence that he acted in a way that would warrant mutual affray or a self-defense argument. In addition, an officer will be able to identify the person as being there, so an alibi defense wouldn’t necessarily work either.
Perhaps the most difficult issue with these cases is challenging the credibility of the officer. The officer usually does not have a bias towards the person which makes it difficult to address any prejudice issues. This contrasts with standard assault cases where people might know each other, and have issues with each other, which may have been the reason for the charges.