DC assault arrests can be a lengthy process that leads to further complications in the future. If you have been arrested for violently attacking someone, it is imperative you that you contact an attorney immediately. They could protect your rights as police conduct their investigation, and the prosecution builds their case.
Once DC law enforcement arrests someone for assault, they are taken to a police station and processed. Usually this person must have their photograph taken and provide fingerprints. Then law enforcement runs a background check to make sure that this person does not have any warrants or other issues with the law.
Once the person is processed, if they are charged with a misdemeanor or simple assault, they could be released on citation and essentially let go with paperwork and a court date unless they have to return to court for their arraignment. However, when the police arrest someone is for a felony assault offense, this person may be held until the next afternoon. Then, they must go before a judge for their arraignment, and this is where they would learn of the charges against them. Here, an accused individual may enter a plea of guilty or not guilty to those charges.
From this point, the judge decides if the person should be released or held until the next court date. If released, the judge determines what conditions of release may protect the community and assure that the defendant returns on their court date.
If an officer charges this individual with simple assault, they do not have a serious or any criminal record, and if the alleged victim did not suffer acute injuries, in most cases, a judge releases this person. The court may order the accused individual to stay away from the alleged victim. Before the next court date, they should prepare their case with an attorney.
If someone receives a charge for a more serious form of assault, has a lengthy criminal record, has missed a lot of court dates in the past, then the judge may order the person be held until their coming court date.
The length of an assault case depends on the type and nature of the incident in question. A simple assault misdemeanor case may move more quickly than a more serious felony. The length also depends on whether the case goes to trial or could be resolved prior.
Generally, a misdemeanor assault case that goes all the way to trial lasts six to eight months from the date of the incident to the trial date. If the parties can resolve the case without going to trial, a simple assault case could take three months.
A felony case of aggravated assault could take six to nine months if a settlement is possible. However, this process may take eight to twelve months or longer if it goes all the way to trial and some complications arise. Individuals have a constitutional right to a speedy trial, meaning that the prosecution cannot delay a case without a good cause or justification, but other complications or with the consent of the defendant, a complicated felony case could last even two years.
Usually, if it is a police investigation of assault in DC, detectives interview the relevant parties to get more information about the incident. They also may determine if there is any surveillance footage, traffic cameras, or any other media that may have documented the incident. Depending on if there were any injuries involved, law enforcement may try to subpoena medical records of the plaintiff or another to establish they anyone received medical treatment.
Depending on the nature of the interaction and the phase of the case, law enforcement may not need to advise an accused individual of their rights. When the police come to speak to an accused individual, they can refuse to talk to them. Sometimes officers show up in person and try to talk to the suspect and see if they say anything incriminating or try to get them to confess to the accusations against them. A person should never engage in this conversation without talking to a lawyer first.
A DC assault arrest could drastically impact many aspects of your life, including your personal and professional relationships. A well-practiced defense lawyer could work to ensure that after an arrest for assault you are prepared for what is to come. For help after an arrest, call today.
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