Charlotte Assault with a Deadly Weapon Defense Lawyer

Assault with a deadly weapon is a serious charge in North Carolina. If you have been charged with assaulting someone in Charlotte, North Carolina, you may face serious consequences. Depending on the facts of your case, you might face misdemeanor charges or more severe felony charges. An assault with a deadly weapon conviction could result in a prison sentence of over a year as well as a permanent criminal record. There are several different types of defenses you can raise against your charges. Determining the best legal strategy is essential.

Contact Our Charlotte Assault with a Deadly Weapon Lawyers

Assault with deadly weapon charges can be extremely serious. Whether you have been charged with a misdemeanor offense or a felony offense, you will need to seek the help of a criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. At Arnold & Smith, PLLC, we can help you build a strong defense for the assault charges you face. Time is of the essence when it comes to creating a legal defense for assault charges. Contact our Charlotte criminal defense law firm today to schedule your case evaluation.

Misdemeanor Assault Charges

Most Charlotte assault and battery charges are misdemeanor offenses in North Carolina. The underlying basis of an assault with a deadly weapon charge is simple assault. Threatening someone can constitute an assault charge. On the other hand, battery is a crime that requires that someone make physical contact with a person. There are three different types of assault and battery crimes:

  • The first type of assault and battery involves incidents in which someone physically injures someone else
  • Assault can also involve an attempt to commit the crime of assault and battery, or a show of force when an assault appears to be imminent
  • Affray involves a fight between two or more people in a public place that results in putting other people in fear
Assault with a Deadly Weapon as a Misdemeanor Charge

Assault with a deadly weapon is one of the most serious types of misdemeanor offenses. Someone can be charged with the offense of assault with a deadly weapon if he or she commits an assault, battery, or if he or she causes a person to suffer a serious injury while using a deadly weapon. North Carolina’s relevant statute does not define “deadly weapon,” but in practice, a deadly weapon can include a gun, blunt object, knife, or any other object that is not generally considered to be a deadly weapon but could kill a person. Misdemeanor assault with deadly weapon charges carry the following possible penalties:

  • Jail sentences up to 60 days for the first-time offense or 150 days if the defendant has prior convictions
  • Unsupervised or supervised probation
  • A fine of the amount in the judge’s discretion
Felony Assault with a Deadly Weapon Charges in Charlotte

You could face a felony assault with a deadly weapon charge if you commit the assault with the intent to cause serious injuries or kill another person, or both. There are two different levels of an assault charge, and both are elements of the crime.

Prosecutors must prove that the defendant inflicted a serious injury. Injuries are considered serious when they require medical attention whether or not the victim actually receives medical attention for the injury. Prosecutors must also prove that the defendant intended to kill the victim. They establish this element by proving the circumstances of the crime. Prosecutors often submit evidence of threats, prior angry incidents, and witness testimony, when available.

Assault with a Deadly Weapon is a Class E Felony

Prosecutors can charge the crime of assault with a deadly weapon as a Class E felony if there was a serious injury, or if the defendant had the intent to kill the victim. If there is a serious injury and an intent to kill on the part of the defendant, prosecutors will charge the crime as a Class C felony. Class C felonies can result in the following penalties:

  • A prison sentence between 44 to 98 months
  • With a presumptive sentence between 58 to 72 months
  • When the defendant has a prior conviction, the sentence can increase to 182 months

For a Class E felony, the offense becomes punishable by 15 to 31 months of jail time. But a judge must be able to justify the sentence if it is not the presumptive sentence between 20 to 25 months in jail. If there are prior convictions, the prison sentence can extend to 182 months.