Westport Assault on an Officer Lawyer
An arrest in Westport, Connecticut for assault on a police officer can often be tacked on to a domestic violence or Westport DUI / DWI arrest. Typically, police arrive, tempers flare on all sides, and police may use force to subdue you. In response, you may use force in self-defense, and next thing you know, you are facing a serious felony charge.
The Westport Police Department wields a great deal of discretion in charging this crime. Therefore, if you have been arrested in for assaulting law enforcement, then you need to work with a Westport assault an officer lawyer who will craft the best defense based on your circumstances. Speak with a skilled assault attorney and know that you are in capable hands.
Assault on an Officer Arrests
Section 53a-167c of the Connecticut penal code sets forth five situations which can get someone arrested for assault on an officer. An individual commits an assault on an officer when, while acting with intention of preventing the officer from performing duties, the individual:
- Injures the officer physically
- Throws an object capable of causing physical harm at the officer
- Uses substances similar to mace or tear gas against the officer
- Throws a staining or coloring agent such as paint at the officer
- Throws any bodily fluid at the officer
How is Physical Injury Defined under Connecticut Law?
Not only is the first situation, causing physical injury, the most common situation, but it is also the vaguest. Unlike other felony assault laws, this statute does not require the injury to be serious in order for an offense to occur. All Connecticut law requires is that the officer experiences some degree of physical pain. There may be little actual evidence of the alleged injury, so this is an area that should be investigated thoroughly by a Westport assault an officer lawyer.
Intent is Always Required
In all five of the situations set forth in CGS §53a-167c, in order for the conduct to violate the statute, the individual must act with the specific intent to prevent the officer from performing official duties, and the officer must be in the process of performing those duties.
Prosecutors prove intent by providing the judge and jury with police statements, video surveillance footage, and inferences based on the actions observed by others.
That is why it is vital to act quickly to preserve as much evidence as possible, particularly digital video surveillance evidence. A Westport assault on an officer lawyer could file motions with the court to help locate and preserve sources such as street and store surveillance cameras, and police camera footage from dashboard cams and bodycams.
Who is Protected by this Law?
While this crime is frequently referred to as “assault on a police officer,” the statute includes a list of public officers covered by the provisions. This list includes:
- Police officers and other employees
- EMTs and emergency room personnel
- Probation officers
- Public transit employees
- DCF employees who work with youth
- Vehicle inspectors
- Employees of the Board of Parole and Judicial Branch
- Liquor control agents
- Search and rescue volunteers
Jail Penalties for Assault on Police Officer
In Westport, assault on an officer is classified as a Class C felony. This class of offense carries a sentence of up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
Contacting a Westport Assault Attorney
Assault on an officer is a serious offense that requires a quick and diligent response. When you work with an experienced Westport assault on an officer lawyer, they can help preserve evidence and work to ensure that your case is defended aggressively. Call now to achieve the best outcome possible.