Three Strong Defenses to Accusations of Assault

On Behalf of Law Offices of Thomas Maynard Oct. 9, 2020

The criminal charge of assault is a serious matter that can result in significant penalties and punishments for a Lebanon resident who is convicted of the crime. Defenses exist to the charge of assault, but individuals should know that not all defenses are appropriate or available in all assault cases. In order to craft a strong criminal defense strategy to an accusation of assault, a person can choose to talk to their own criminal defense attorney to ensure that their defense plan fits their assault case.

Generally, however, there are several strong defenses that may help individuals overcome accusations of assault. This post does not advocate for or provide advice on the use or applicability of these defenses in individual cases, and its contents are offered as information only. The following assault defenses will be discussed in detail for the interest and review of readers: self-defense, defense of others, and defense of property.

Self-Defense as a Defense to Assault Charges

Self-defense is often heard but perhaps less commonly understood defense to assault. An individual is allowed to defend and protect themselves when faced with the threat of violence or harm, and self-defense codifies this as a protection for individuals under the law. In order to use self-defense as a strategy to overcome an assault charge, a defendant must be able to show that they were faced with a threat of harm that they feared and from which they had no opportunity of retreat. When using self-defense, a person does not deny that they inflicted harm on another person, but that the harm they inflicted was justified.

Defense of Others as a Defense to Assault Charges

Defense of others is an appropriate strategy to overcoming assault charges if an individual steps in to protect someone that they believe is subject to imminent and real threats of violence. When putting for defense of others, a defendant facing assault charges must be able to show that they feared for the person they protected and that the protected individual had no opportunity to get away from the threat of harm. Like self-defense, defense of others is an affirmative defense and does not require the defendant to deny that they took action against the complaining party.

Defense of Property as a Defense to Assault Charges

In Tennessee it is permissible for an individual to protect their property from theft and trespass with force. When faced with the threat of injury or loss to their property, a person may use threats of force or actual force to prevent another person from inflicting harm upon them, their land, or other items of their possession.

It is possible for Tennessee residents to successfully defend themselves against assault charges and to prepare strong strategies that match the facts and circumstances of their individual criminal cases. Legal help from attorneys who work in the criminal defense field of law can provide criminal defendants with knowledge and support to protect their rights and legal strategies.