Flint, MI Assault and Violent Crimes Attorney
If you've been accused of a violent crime, you know that your future is hanging in the balance. Violent crimes, whether misdemeanor or felony offenses, can not only carry significant prison sentences, but also a stigma that can slant a jury's view of the facts and embolden prosecutors to push for overly harsh penalties. But with a Flint, MI, violent crimes attorney, you can push back against these obstacles to justice and either clear your good name or get the best possible scenario for your situation.
At Grabel & Associates, we have over 100 years of combined experience defending those accused of all types of violent crimes, from misdemeanor assault to first degree murder. Our Flint defense attorneys excel at aggressively defending even the most complex crimes and have a formidable reputation that we're ready to prove in the Flint courts.
Violent Crimes in Flint, MI
Flint, MI, has a significantly higher than average incidence of violent crime compared to the rest of the country and even the surrounding towns. However, if you've been accused of a violent crime, you don't have to be a victim of the presuppositions embedded into the court system because of the prevalence of these offenses. You are innocent until proven guilty, and we're ready to fight to protect your rights, regardless of your charges.
We also realize that all “violent crimes” are not created equal. Violent crimes in Flint can range from simple assault – which can be as little as taking a swing at another person in response to an insult – all the way up to first-degree murder and everything in between. Some of the violent crimes we defend include:
- Simple assault & battery
- Aggravated assault & battery
- Assault against special victims
- Assault with a deadly weapon
- Assault with intent to rob or steal
- Assault with intent to maim
- Assault with intent to cause great bodily harm
- Assault with intent to murder
- Domestic violence
- Felony firearm possession
- Gang violence
If you're arrested on any of these charges, your case will begin in the 67th District Court at 630 Saginaw Street here in Flint where you will be usually be arraigned within 24 hours of your arrest. If it is a misdemeanor offense, your trial will take place here as well. If the offense is a felony, you will be transferred to the 7th Circuit Court down the road at 900 Saginaw Street.
The decisions made in either of these courtrooms will change the rest of your life – so don't appear before the jury without an attorney who has a proven track record in defending violent crime accusations.
Penalties for Violent Crimes
The first question most of our clients have is “what potential penalties am I facing?” The answer to this is complex and has to take into consideration the details of the situation as well as a person's past criminal record. However the law does not allow judges to lay down any penalty they feel like, but prescribes boundaries, including maximum sentences for first offenses, such as those below:
Assault & Battery
Assault is the attempt or threat of violence, whereas battery is the actual commission of the violent act. Whether you are accused of assault or assault and battery together, the penalties are the same. Unarmed assault is a misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to 93 days in jail (for simple assault, where the injuries are minor) or 1 year in jail (for aggravated assault, where there are significant injuries).
Assault against special victims, such as law enforcement or emergency medical personnel acting in an official capacity is a felony punishable by up to 2 years in prison and/or a $2,000 fine, even if no injuries occur. If injuries do occur, the penalties can be substantially more.
More serious forms of assault, including assault with intent to rob or steal, maim, or cause great bodily harm are punishable by up to 10 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $5,000. If any of these types of assault are committed with a deadly weapon or with the intent to murder, the penalty can be up to life in prison. Assault with a deadly weapon alone (no intent) can incur a sentence of up to 4 years in prison and/or a $2,000 fine.
Domestic violence is a special form of assault that is performed against someone with whom the offender has an intimate relationship – for example a spouse, ex-spouse, boyfriend or girlfriend. Domestic violence performed without a weapon carries the same penalties as a normal assault – up to 93 days in jail and/or up to a $500 fine for assault with no major injuries and up to 1 year in jail and/or up to $1,000 in fines for an assault that does cause severe injuries.
Although stalking may not seem like a violent crime, this offense is one that makes another person feel threatened and fearful for his physical well-being, regardless of whether or not the stalker follows through on the threat. A first offense is a misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine, and subsequent offenses are felonies punishable by 5 years in prison and a $10,000 fine or 10 years in prison and a $20,000 if the person being stalked is a minor and the stalker is 5 or more years older.
Felony Firearm Possession
A person who has been convicted of a felony may not possess a firearm for 3-5 years after he has completed his prison sentence, paid all his fines, and successfully completed all probation or parole requirements. The penalty for having a firearm in your position before this time is up to 5 years in prison and/or up to $5,000 in fines.
Arson is a broad term that describes the act of setting someone's property on fire. It is also known as “willful and malicious destruction” and can be a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the value of the property that was burned. In some aggravated cases, such as setting fire to a multi-unit residence, such as an apartment building or a condo, the maximum sentence can be life in prison.
Any felony committed by a gang is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $20,000, in addition to the penalty for the other crime. Even recruiting someone to participate in a gang-related felony is itself a felony and is punishable by up to 5 years in prison and/or a $5,000 fine.
Homicide includes both manslaughter and murder. Both voluntary and involuntary manslaughter are punishable by up to 15 years in prison and first and second degree murder are punishable by up to life in prison.
Defending Against Violent Crime Charges
Although violent crime charges are serious, defending against such charges is possible. With an experienced defense attorney from Grabel & Associates who will consider every facet of the situation, you may be able to use one or more of these effective defenses against violent charges:
- Self-defense or defense of others: Violence is justifiable when its goal is to protect yourself or someone else from death or serious injury and your violence does not exceed that which is necessary to neutralize the threat.
- Entrapment: The Flint police department has very strict rules against trying to persuade an individual to commit a crime so he can be arrested. If you were tricked into committing a crime, you should not be held guilty.
- Mistaken identity: Sometimes people are accused of a violent crime based on the word of witnesses who believe they saw them at the scene. Witnesses are notoriously unreliable and mistaken identity is a powerful defense that can result in the complete dismissal of the case.
- Alibi: If someone can vouch for your whereabouts, your attorney may be able to argue that you were not present at the scene to commit the crime.
The bottom line is that although violent crimes are serious, no charge is hopeless. With a dedicated and experience violent crime attorney by your side, you can be sure justice will be done. Call us today to discuss the details of your situation at 1-800-342-7896 or contact us online now.