West Virginia Lawyer Defending You in Assault and Battery Cases
More than 30 years’ experience in criminal defense
An assault conviction is a serious blemish on your record that can hurt your employment prospects for years to come. If you have been charged with assault, you need an attorney who is dedicated vigorously defending you. At The Giatras Law Firm, PLLC, our more than 20 years of experience in criminal defense have prepared us to achieve justice in your case.
Assault vs. battery under West Virginia law
Though often lumped together, assault and battery are different criminal offenses in West Virginia. Assault is an attempt to cause violent injury or to threaten violence. Battery is intentional physical contact that is insulting or provoking or results in physical harm. In short, battery is an act of physical violence, while assault is the threat or intimidation of violence.
Under West Virginia law, there are various types of assault, including:
- Simple assault — This misdemeanor generally does not involve a weapon or other aggravating factors, but may include minor physical harm.
- Aggravated assault — This is usually a felony and requires an intent to cause serious physical harm.
- Malicious assault — This felony occurs when a person shoots, stabs, cuts or wounds a person with the intent to maim, disfigure, disable or kill. Many other states call this assault with a deadly weapon.
- Sexual assault — This is often a felony and involves any assault that is sexual in nature.
What are the penalties for assault and battery in West Virginia?
Simple assault is punishable by six months in jail and a $100 fine, while simple battery is punishable by 12 months in jail and a $500 fine. Penalties for repeat offenders or assault and battery against a government official are tougher. These offenses carry penalties of one to three years in prison and a fine of $1,000 for a second offense, or two to five years in prison and a $2,000 fine for a third offense.
If the assault or battery grows out of a domestic dispute, the penalties are heavier for repeat offenders. Subsequent domestic assault offenses are charged as felonies and carry the following penalties:
- Second offense — Minimum of 30 to 60 days in jail up to a maximum of one year, as well as a fine of up to $1,000
- Third offense — Minimum of one year in prison and a fine of up to $2,500
Criminal charges can follow you for a lifetime, so it is important to work with an experienced attorney. Contact us online or by phone 888-819-1281 to learn how the attorneys at The Giatras Law Firm, PLLC can fight your charges.