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Rochester Criminal Assault Lawyer

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Get Help From a Top-Rated Rochester, MN Criminal Assault Attorney

Were you or a loved one arrested and charged with assault in Southern Minnesota? It is entirely normal to be stressed out and unsure of what to do next. An assault is a serious matter. Depending on the allegations, it could be a misdemeanor or a felony charge. The criminal penalties can be stiff. It is imperative that defendants have professional legal representation. 

At Kohlmeyer Hagen, Law Office Chtd., our Rochester criminal assault attorneys are tireless, committed advocates for our clients. If you or someone close to you was arrested and charged with any type of assault-related offense, we are here to help. To set up a fully confidential, no obligation consultation with a top Minnesota assault attorney, please contact our Rochester office today.

What is Assault in Minnesota?

The State of Minnesota defines the crime of assault as the intentional act that causes fear of immediate bodily harm to another person, or intentionally causes bodily harm to another person. Assault may be either a misdemeanor criminal offense or a felony criminal offense in Minnesota. As with any other type of criminal charge, a proactive approach is essential. Consult with a Rochester, MN assault defense lawyer as soon as possible after an arrest.

Areas of An Overview of the Different Degrees of Assault Charges

Were you or a loved one arrested for an assault charge in Olmsted County? It is crucial that you understand the nature, scope, and severity of the charges against you. In Minnesota, there are five degrees of assault charges. Severity of penalties are based, largely, on the degree of the offense.

  • First Degree Assault in Rochester: First degree assault is a very serious felony offense. It occurs when a person inflicts great bodily harm on another, often with a dangerous and deadly weapon. It carries up to 20 years behind bars (Sec. 609.221 MN Statutes).
  • Second Degree Assault in Rochester: Second degree assault is also a felony offense. It is assault with a dangerous and deadly weapon. If the victim is unharmed, the maximum sentence is seven years. If the victim is harmed, the maximum sentence is ten years. (Sec. 609.222 MN Statutes).
  • Third Degree Assault in Rochester: Third degree assault is the causing of unlawful and substantial bodily harm, without a dangerous weapon. It is a felony charge and it can result in up to five years in state prison (Sec. 609.223 MN Statutes).
  • Fourth Degree Assault in Rochester: Fourth degree assault is a gross misdemeanor. It is charged when a person assaults a police officer or other emergency personnel, but does not cause a substantial injury. As a gross misdemeanor, it carries a maximum penalty of up to one year behind bars (Sec. 609.2231 MN Statutes).
  • Fifth Degree Assault in Rochester: Most assault charges in Minnesota are simple assault charges. A fifth degree assault (simple assault) is a misdemeanor criminal offense that can result in up to 90 days in jail (Sec. 609.224 MN Statutes).

Defenses to Assault Charges in Rochester

As with any other type of criminal charge, the burden of proof always rests on the prosecution, not on the defendant. It is up to the prosecutor to prove every element of the assault charge beyond a reasonable doubt. At the same time, defendants do not have to sit back and wait to see what the prosecution does. You have the right to raise a legal defense when facing an assault charge in Rochester. Several potential legal defenses are available in these cases. Notable examples include:

  • A Claim of Self-Defense: A person acting in the defense of themselves or the defense of others can defend an assault charge on those grounds if they had a reasonable fear of harm.
  • Consent: It is not assault if both parties consent to the act. If consent was provided by the alleged victim, assault charges may be dropped.
  • No Intent: Intent is a key aspect in many assault charges. Lack of intent to cause fear/harm to the alleged victim may be a viable defense against assault charges.
  • Mistaken Identity: A criminal assault may have occurred, but you may not be the party guilty of the offense.
  • False Allegations: The reality is that charges are sometimes brought on false grounds. You have the right to raise a zealous defense against false allegations of assault.

Defending a misdemeanor assault charge or a felony assault charge in Minnesota is a lot easier if you have access to comprehensive evidence. If facing assault charges in Rochester, you need a skilled criminal defense lawyer who will conduct a thorough investigation of the case. Among other things, an investigation should include analyzing the available evidence, interviewing witnesses, and proactively identifying potential legal defenses.

Domestic Assault Charges Can Be Especially Complicated

When a person is alleged to have committed domestic assault against a close family member and/or current or former intimate partner, the resulting criminal charges can be especially complicated. These are known as domestic assault cases. In Minnesota, a conviction for domestic assault can result in severe legal and personal consequences. 

As defined by state law, domestic assault is assault against a family or household member, including spouses, former spouses, individuals who live together or have lived together, individuals who have a child together, and individuals who are in a romantic or sexual relationship. It can be charged as a gross misdemeanor offense or a felony offense depending on the specific circumstances. 

As domestic assault charges can have family law implications beyond the criminal penalties, it is especially crucial that these matters are handled with the proper level of care, attention, and sensitivity. If you or your loved one is facing any type of domestic assault charge in Olmsted County, please contact our Rochester assault defense lawyers for immediate help. 

Assault Charges Should Always Be Defended on a Case-By-Case Basis

Assault charges are a serious matter that should always be approached with caution and a thorough understanding of the facts of the case. Here is a key principle of our Rochester, MN criminal defense law firm: Each case is unique and should be evaluated on its own merits to determine the best defense strategy. No matter the situation, we are ready to consider all available evidence, witness testimony, and potential legal defenses when defending against assault charges. Beyond that, the severity of the alleged offense, the criminal record of the accused, and the potential consequences of a conviction should be taken into account. The right defense strategy must be personalized.

Why Choose Our Rochester Criminal Assault Lawyer

Facing an assault charge can be stressful, it can be intimidating, and it can be confusing. You do not have to take on police and prosecutors alone—they are not on your side. At Kohlmeyer Hagen, Law Office Chtd., we are proactive advocates for our clients. When you reach out to our Rochester office, you will have a chance to work with a Minnesota criminal defense attorney who can:

  • Hear your story and answer questions about assault charges;
  • Review the specific charges, ensuring that you understand the implications;
  • Investigate the allegations—gathering the evidence you need to build your case;
  • Represent before police and prosecutors—including any plea bargaining; and
  • Build a fully personalized legal strategy focused on getting you the best outcome.

Contact Our Rochester Criminal Assault Attorney for Immediate Help

At Kohlmeyer Hagen, Law Office Chtd., our Rochester criminal assault defense attorneys are skilled and effective advocates for clients. If you or your family member was arrested for assault, we can help. Contact us today at 507-625-5000 for a completely confidential, no commitment consultation. From our Rochester law office, our firm handles assault charges in communities throughout Olmsted County, including Stewartville, Byron, Oronoco, Eyota, Dover, and High Forest. Please call 507-625-5000.

Frequently Asked Questions

Assault Charges in Rochester, Minnesota

What Happens If I Invoke My Right to Remain Silent in an Assault Case?

The Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution grants every person in Minnesota the right to remain silent after an arrest. You can and should invoke this right. When you remain silent, police and prosecutors will not have the chance to use any of your statements as evidence against you in court. Your decision to remain silent also cannot be used as evidence of your guilt.

Is Assault a Misdemeanor or a Felony in Minnesota?

Whether assault is a misdemeanor or a felony in Minnesota depends on the nature of the charge. There are different degrees of assault in Minnesota, and each one is classified as either a misdemeanor or a felony based on the severity of the offense. For example, first-degree assault, which involves causing serious injury, is a felony. On the other hand, simple assault is charged as a misdemeanor criminal offense.

Should I Consider a Plea Bargain for an Assault Charge?

Broadly stated, a plea bargain is an agreement between the prosecution and the defendant in which the defendant pleads guilty to a reduced charge or a lighter sentence. Whether you should consider a plea bargain for an assault charge in Rochester depends on many factors, including the terms of the agreement and the evidence that the prosecutors have (or lack thereof). A plea bargain should always be negotiated and reviewed by an experienced Rochester, MN criminal defense lawyer.

Yes-or at least it is possible to get assault charges dismissed. Of course, doing so is by no means a guarantee. Getting assault charges in Rochester dismissed always depends on the specific circumstances. Some notable factors include the severity of the alleged assault, the strength of the evidence against the accused, and the effectiveness of the defense strategy. Our Rochester, MN assault defense lawyers fight hard to help clients get charges dismissed whenever possible.

While not guaranteed for a misdemeanor simple assault conviction, prison time for an assault charge is a huge risk. All degrees of assault carry jail time in Minnesota. For a first degree felony assault, a person could face a lengthy sentence behind bars. For this reason, it is absolutely vital that these allegations are taken seriously and that a proactive defense is raised. Our Rochester assault lawyers put a strong emphasis on protecting the freedom of our clients.

In Minnesota, there is no legal distinction between assault and battery as there is in other states. Unlike some states, Minnesota does not officially use the term “battery” in its criminal statutes. Instead, the term “assault” encompasses all forms of harmful or offensive physical contact, including hitting, pushing, or slapping. Therefore, the difference between assault and battery in Minnesota is simply a matter of terminology. If someone is accused of physical violence, they can face charges for assault under Minnesota law.

Don’t wait to contact us | 507.625.5000

Contact us as soon as possible. The sooner you call us and get us on the case, the more time we wil have to prepare your defense. Even if you are not sure you want to hire us, call us and talk with one of our criminal defense attorneys. We offer a complimentary, no-obligation consultation. Talk to us and see what we can do for you.