Richmond VA Assault Injury Lawyer
At the Virginia law firm of Christina Pendleton & Associates, our Richmond assault injury lawyers know that the crime of assault is a very serious offense that can have long-lasting repercussions on the victim. While assault does not include the physical touching of one person to another, it can sometimes precede a crime, be a major part of the criminal activity, or may leave a lasting psychological impact on a person. The criminal court system is in place to adequately punish the individuals who are charged with criminal offenses. However, in some cases, victims may seek recourse outside the criminal court system.
Assault is typically considered in the criminal context, although a claim for damages may still be brought against the responsible party. Assault and battery are two separate crimes which can get confusing, based on a person’s understanding of the law. Assault occurs when harm is threatened, whereas battery occurs when actual physical contact occurs. It does not matter that touching did not occur during the assault.
For example, assault can occur when a criminal attempts to rob an individual and threatens them with a weapon, such as a gun. Assault charges can simply occur if the victim believed they were in imminent danger of their life. The criminal charges will often delve deep into the full criminal activity, but personal injury actions can simply look at the emotional harm caused by such a crime. A knowledgeable Richmond assault injury lawyer will be able to provide you with more information regarding assault outside of the criminal context.
Personal Injury Claims
A civil action for the damages caused by an assault can occur at the same time as a criminal action. Criminal actions are held to a higher burden of proof, and therefore a civil action may have a likelier chance of ruling in your favor as the victim. Neither the criminal nor the civil action will be dependent on the outcome of the other court, and will be brought independently of the other claim. Whereas the criminal action will attempt to determine whether the defendant met every piece of the criminal definition of “assault,” a civil claim will consider whether the defendant was liable for the victim’s resulting injuries. If the defendant is found to be liable for the injuries, they will be required to compensate the victim, based on the claim amounts. A civil suit for damages after an assault can include the following:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Future earnings
- Pain and suffering
While assault often does not result in serious injuries to an individual that could have a long-lasting physical impact, assault could lead to tremendous psychological and emotional distress caused by the crime. Assault charges are often part of a larger criminal action and can be quite jarring on an individual who was not expecting a crime to take place during the course of their day. An experienced Richmond personal injury lawyer can assist you in determining the scope of your personal injury claim and the amount of damages you are entitled to receive.
Contact an Assault Injury Attorney in Richmond, VA
If you or a loved one have been the victim of an assault charge, you may be able to bring a civil suit for damages which were the result of the assault. The lawyers of Christina Pendleton & Associates have years of experience in assisting our clients with assault claims against the responsible party. Assault is a serious offense, and when a criminal claim does not proceed to the level of appropriate punishment, you may want to consider filing a civil claim not only to punish the defendant but also to receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries. Call our office at 804-554-4444 or contact us online for a free case evaluation with an assault injury lawyer in Richmond, VA.