Lack of Intent

A lack of intent defense argues that you accidentally used force against the victim and did not plan to cause harm. An example of when this defense might be appropriate would be if you were in a crowded nightclub and accidentally pushed someone when you were trying to make your way back to a friend. Even if you caused an injury, you did not have the criminal intent necessary for the charge. 

Please note that lack of intent does not apply to cases where you made an idle threat. Verbal threats to scare or frighten someone are still considered assault, even if you didn't plan to actually harm them. 

Preventing Harm 

It is legally acceptable to use force if you were acting in a way that was intended to prevent a mentally ill or impaired person from harming themselves or others. This could mean that you were intervening to break up a fight or that you used force to take a weapon away from someone who was making threats of self-harm.

Wrongful Accusations

This defense is rare but can be appropriate in cases where a group of people were engaged in a fight and more than one person could have caused the victim's injury. It may also be applicable if the victim was severely intoxicated or otherwise unable to accurately identify the perpetrator. 

Mistakes to Avoid

We encourage our clients to be active participants in building their defense and will fight to ensure that you're allowed to tell your side of the story. However, there are some common mistakes we often see people make. We encourage you to request our free offer, Top 10 Ways You Are Killing Your Defense, to learn how to avoid common mistakes and ensure you have the best possible outcome for your case. 


Lee Berlin
Dedicated to defending clients accused of domestic violence, sex & violent crimes throughout eastern Oklahoma.