While not always used as a weapon, motor vehicles can be considered as such under New Jersey’s Assault laws. Typically, Assault by Auto charges stem from a drunk driver who is involved in a crash due to their impairment from drugs or alcohol. The critical question in any Assault by Auto case is “how severe are the injuries?” Depending upon the answer to that question, you could be facing anywhere from an indictable felony offense down to a less severe misdemeanor charge. Even when the offense does not involve an intoxicated driver, the Court will still look to the nature of the injuries when determining the degree of the charges. If you have been arrested and charged with Assault By Auto, Driving While Intoxicated (DWI), Drug DWI, Reckless Driving, Eluding, Possession of Marijuana, Heroin Possession, Simple Assault, Aggravated Assault, Leaving the Scene of an Accident or Resisting Arrest, contact the Mount Holly Criminal Attorneys at Proetta & Oliver. Are trial lawyers are experienced handling all types of criminal cases, including Assault by Auto, in Burlington County. For an immediate consultation, please do not hesitate to contact our office today. Mr. Fay, one of the firm’s partners, is a former NJ Deputy Attorney General who know focuses primarily on the practice of criminal defense in New Jersey. Having spent time working for the State, Mr. Fay is well-versed in understanding prosecutor tactics. For an immediate and complimentary consultation with Mr. Fay, please do not hesitate to contact our Burlington County office today at (609) 850-8284. We are available 24/7 for your convenience and we handle cases throughout New Jersey, including towns like Bordentown Township, Southampton,Burlington Township, Mount Laurel, Cinnaminson, Evesham, Florence, Maple Shade, Willingboro, Medford, Moorestown, Mount Holly, Palmyra, Riverside Township,Westampton and Delran. For more information on your Assault by Auto charges, please read the information provided below.
Maple Shade NJ Assault by Auto Charges N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1(c)
Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2C:12-c, Assault by Auto is a criminal offense in New Jersey. This statute specifically states that you will be in violation of the law when “the person drives a vehicle or vessel recklessly and causes either serious bodily injury or bodily injury to another.” While the law itself is fairly short and straightforward, its application is not. These cases become difficult. The risk must be of such a nature and degree when the Court or a Jury attempt to define what qualifies as “reckless.” Under most model jury charges, recklessly is defined as follows:
“A person acts recklessly when he/she consciously disregards a substantial and unjustifiable risk that bodily injury will result from his/her conduct that, considering the nature and purpose of the defendant’s conduct and the circumstances known to him/her, disregard of the risk involves a gross deviation from the standard of conduct that a reasonable person would observe in the defendant’s situation.”
This is a mouthful for any lawyer, let alone a non-lawyer trying to represent themselves in a criminal case involving Assault by Auto charges. For more information on this laws application, call (609) 850-8284.
Different Types of Assault by Auto Charges in New Jersey
Disorderly Persons Offense Assault by Auto Pemberton NJ
As mentioned above, Assault by Auto charges vary depending upon the nature of the injuries caused by the accident. In instances where the victim only suffersbodily injury, the court will charge the defendant with a disorderly persons offense for assault by auto. This is only the case where no alcohol or drugs were involved in the impairment of the driver.
Fourth Degree Assault by Auto Westampton NJ
For those instances where the victim suffers serious bodily injury, the court will charge the defendant with fourth degree assault by auto. This is only the case where no alcohol or drugs were involved in the impairment of the driver. However, where the driver is intoxicated or under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and the victim suffers bodily injury, then the defendant may also be charged with fourth degree assault by auto.
Third Degree Assault by Auto Florence NJ
Alternatively, in those cases where the defendant is also being charged with driving while intoxicated (DWI / DUI) and the victim suffers serious bodily injury, then the charges will be elevated to a third degree indictable felony offense in Burlington County. Conversely, if the Defendant is accused of driving while intoxicated in a school zone but the victim only suffers bodily injury, then the charges for assault by auto will also be in the third degree.
Second Degree Assault by Auto Bass River NJ
Finally, in those rare situations where the defendant is (1) allegedly driving in a school zone, (2) under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and (3) the victim suffers serious bodily injury, then the charges will be in the second degree.
Will I Go to Prison for Assault By Assault Charges?
The penalties and possibility of a prison sentence vary depending on the degree of your charges, your criminal history and any other circumstances surrounding your case. For a disorderly persons assault by auto charge, you are facing up to six (6) months in the Burlington County Jail, possible probation and a $1,000 fine. For a person charged with fourth degree assault by auto, the defendant faces up to eighteen (18) months in a NJ State Prison and a $10,000 fine. For a person charged with third degree assault by auto, you are facing up to five (5) years in a NJ State Prison and a $15,000 fine. Lastly, for a person charged with second degree assault by auto, they are facing up to ten (10) years in a New Jersey State Prison and a $150,000 fine.
Assault by Auto Attorneys in Mount Holly
Criminal charges involving Assault by Auto are very serious in Burlington County. If you or a loved one were involving in a motor vehicle accident based on reckless driving or a DWI, it is important that you contact an experienced Burlington County Criminal Attorney. Proetta & Oliveris a criminal law firm that handles cases involving assault by auto, robbery,aggravated assault, endangering the welfare of a child or driving under the influence in Burlington County. Contact our office and consult with an attorney about how we can craft a strategy for fighting your charges. To speak with an attorney today, call (609) 850-8284. Our firm is available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week for your convenience.
Our phones are answered 24 hours a day. We are available weekdays during business hours. We also meet with clients on evenings and weekends by request. We have four office locations conveniently located in Mount Laurel, Point Pleasant, Princeton and Middletown. All major credit cards are accepted.