Simple Assault and Aggravated Assault in New Jersey
The New Jersey law which criminalizes an assault in the State of New Jersey can be found in the title 2C which contains the New Jersey Criminal Code; in Chapter 12- Assault; Reckless Endangering; Threats. The specific statute is 2C:12-1 which is titled “assault”. Assault charges are one of the most common and serious charges in the State of New Jersey. It is often said that the winner of a fight is often the loser in the courtroom. It is important to assess all the facts and circumstances and consider all defenses and possible lack of proof arguments.
The Bianchi Law Group, LLC
The Bianchi Law Group is made up of former trial prosecutors and other “of counsel” attorneys who have handled the investigations and prosecutions of most crimes in New Jersey and will defend you for all federal and state crimes in New Jersey including Simple Assault and Aggravated Assault.
Former Assault Prosecutors
Founding Partner and Former Morris County Prosecutor Robert A. Bianchi has returned to private practice after running the operations of the entire Morris County Prosecutor’s Office having served as the Morris County Prosecutor for 5 and 1/2 years (2007-2013). Mr. Bianchi was appointed as the Morris County Prosecutor by the Governor of the State of New Jersey and unanimously confirmed by the New Jersey Senate in 2007. While serving as the Morris County Prosecutor, Mr. Bianchi ran the entire office’s operations, inclusive of all of its attorneys, detectives, and support staff with a budget of approximately 11 million dollars. His innovative programs and approach have led to numerous awards from State, Local, Municipal, business, and private entities. Robert Bianchi served on the Executive Board of the County Prosecutors’ Association and was one of the few prosecutors in many years to actually argue cases, motions, and sentences in court, and actually tried a murder case himself, which is extremely rare for a sitting county prosecutor.
Mr. Bianchi was previously a Hudson County Assistant Prosecutor (1989-1996) and thereafter a partner in the law firm Bianchi & Bianchi (1996-2007). Robert was one of the few attorneys in the State who qualified to handle death penalty cases when New Jersey had the death penalty.
Partner David J. Bruno has also returned to private practice after serving as Morris County Assistant Prosecutor (2007-2013). As an assistant prosecutor, Mr. Bruno prosecuted murder, major crimes, white collar, internal affairs, domestic violence, assault, aggravated assault, attempted murder, and elderly abuse cases. Additionally, Mr. Bruno handled fraud and Major Crimes investigations and successfully tried a wide variety of trials including securing convictions for several high-profile murder cases.
In December 2012, then Prosecutor Bianchi and Assistant Prosecutor Bruno worked together to secure a murder conviction against Jose Feliciano for the violent death of Father Edward Hinds in at St. Patrick’s Church in Chatham, New Jersey. Mr. Feliciano was sentenced to life without parole.
Together, Robert A. Bianchi, David J. Bruno and other “of counsel” attorneys make up an aggressive, ethical, and results-oriented New Jersey Criminal Defense firm who handle all criminal, municipal and DUI/DWI cases in New Jersey including Simple Assault and Aggravated Assault cases.
Certified Criminal Trial Attorneys by the New Jersey Supreme Court
Partners Robert A. Bianchi and David J. Bruno are also both certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey as Criminal Trial Attorneys.
In New Jersey, the New Jersey Supreme Court has a certification committee which classifies certain New Jersey Lawyers as Certified Trial Attorneys. The process requires the prospective attorneys to satisfy strict criteria including extensive jury trials, a primary focus in criminal law, an application submission, a peer review process, a character and background check and to pass a written examination. Only 250 of over 98,000 lawyers (less than 1%) are designated as certified criminal trial attorneys by the New Jersey Supreme Court. This should be an important factor in finding a New Jersey criminal defense attorney to represent you. Many New Jersey Lawyers describe themselves as trial attorneys, but most do not have the New Jersey Court’s distinction as Certified Criminal Trial Attorney.
The first subsection, subsection a, criminalizes a simple assault. A simple assault is less serious than an aggravated assault and primarily depends on the degree of injury or the intent to cause such injury. These degrees hinge on such definitions that are found in other areas of the criminal code such as attempt, purposely, knowingly, recklessly, bodily injury, deadly weapon, and serious bodily injury.
Simple assault in New Jersey is a disorderly persons offense unless committed in a fight or scuffle entered into by mutual consent, in which case it is a petty disorderly persons offense. A person who has been convicted of a disorderly persons offense or a petty disorderly persons offense may be sentenced to imprisonment up to 6 months in the case of a disorderly persons offense or up to 30 days in the case of a petty disorderly persons offense. See 2C:43-8. The Judge may also order fines and restitution as prescribed by 2C:43-3.
The second subsection, subsection b, criminalizes an Aggravated Assault. An Aggravated Assault is more serious than a simple assault and also primarily depends on the degree of injury or the intent to cause such injury. These distinctions hinge on such definitions that are found in other areas of the criminal code such as attempt, purposely, knowingly, recklessly, bodily injury, deadly weapon, and serious bodily injury. A simple assault may also be elevated to an aggravated assault based on who the victim of the assault is. See 2C:12-1(b)(5). For example, a simple assault on a law enforcement officer, a fireman, a person engaged in emergency first-aid or medical services, school board member, school administrator, teacher, school bus driver will be considered an Aggravated Assault in New Jersey.
Aggravated assault in New Jersey under subsections b (1) and b (6) is a crime of the second degree; under subsections b (2), b (7), b (9) and b(10) is a crime of the third degree; under subsections b (3) and b(4) is a crime of the fourth degree; and under subsection b (5) is a crime of the third degree if the victim suffers bodily injury, otherwise it is a crime of the fourth-degree.
Aggravated assault in New Jersey under subsection b(8) is a crime of the third-degree if the victim suffers a bodily injury; if the victim suffers significant bodily injury or serious bodily injury it is a crime of the second degree.
Aggravated assault in New Jersey under subsection b. (11) is a crime of the third-degree.
Crimes in the second-degree range can be punishable from 5 years to 10 years in New Jersey State prison. Crimes in the third-degree range can be punishable from 3 years to 5 years in the New Jersey State prison. Crimes in the 4th-degree range can be punishable up to 18 months in New Jersey State prison.
The Sentencing Judge may also order fines and restitution as prescribed by 2C:43-3 for all convictions to Aggravated Assault.
Trial Ready New Jersey Criminal Lawyers
Like in all of our cases handled at the Bianchi Law Group, our experienced staff of trial attorneys and “of counsel” attorneys are there to make sure the Government can prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt. If our attorneys cannot resolve the case with a dismissal or a fair and just plea bargain, our lawyers at The Bianchi Law Group will not hesitate to select a jury and take the case to trial. That is what we do and what distinguishes us from other attorneys. We are former prosecutors, trial-tested, and certified by the New Jersey Supreme Court as certified criminal trial attorneys… We will not hesitate to go to trial.
Contact Us Today for an Initial Consultation
Contact Former Morris County Prosecutor Robert A. Bianchi, Esq. and David J. Bruno, Esq. at The Bianchi Law Group, LLC online or call (862) 210-8570 to schedule an initial consultation with an experienced New Jersey Defense Attorney.