Assault charges are considered violent crimes, so the penalties can be very serious. If you’re facing assault charges, even misdemeanor assault in North Carolina, you may be in for a shock when you see what kind of penalty you could be facing.
You don’t even have to make physical contact to get slapped with an assault charge in North Carolina. Merely putting someone in fear of physical harm is enough to get you convicted.
If you’re facing charges like this, contact us today for a consultation with a local criminal defense attorney that can help.
North Carolina Assault Laws
In North Carolina if you are charged with an assault, it can be classified as either a misdemeanor or a felony. How it is classified depends on the circumstances of your case and the evidence that the prosecutor has against you.
Felony Assault With A Deadly Weapon
The more serious of assault crimes is felony assault with a deadly weapon. If it’s believed you committed an assault and in the commission of that offense, you used a deadly weapon, you could face this charge.
If you commit this offense with the intent to kill them and instead cause serious injury, you will face a Class C felony which carries the potential of 44 to 92 months for a first time offense.
If, however, you commit an assault with a deadly weapon and you inflict serious injury but they cannot prove your intent, it will be charged as a Class E felony. Likewise, if you intend to kill and they cannot prove it caused serious injury, it will be a Class E felony. Class E felonies carry a potential sentence of 15 to 31 months behind prison walls.
These potential sentences are based off a clean criminal record. If you have prior convictions on your record, however, you could face a longer potential sentence.
Ref: NCGS 14-32
Misdemeanor Assault – Laws and Penalties in NC
A misdemeanor assault case is more common than a felony assault case. This would be the charge if you assault someone but it doesn’t fit the criteria to be charged as described above.
In general, a misdemeanor assault is a Class 1 misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail. However, if you have a relatively clean criminal record and depending on the circumstances of the offense, there’s a good chance you could get the sentence suspended, instead serving a period of probation in lieu of jail time.
Ref: NCGS 14-33
Whether you’re facing misdemeanor charges of felony charges, you are looking at some pretty serious penalties. Contact us today to talk to a local defense attorney willing to give you a free consultation on your North Carolina assault case.