If you've been charged with assault and battery in Oklahoma, it's natural to wonder if you should be preparing to spend time behind bars. Although there is a real possibility of jail time if you are convicted, there are many variables to consider—and working with an experienced Tulsa criminal defense attorney can help you work towards the best possible outcome for your case.
Potential Penalties for Assault and Battery
In Oklahoma, assault is a misdemeanor punishable by up to 30 days in jail, a $500 fine, or both. Assault and battery is a misdemeanor punishable by up to 90 days in prison, a $1,000 fine, or both. Defendants may also be ordered to pay restitution for costs related to the crime, such as the victim's medical expenses or the replacement of damaged property.
Please note that the possibility of jail time increases when you face additional charges related to the circumstances of the alleged crime, such as kidnapping, threatening a violent act, or interfering with an emergency call.
There are also enhanced penalties if the offense is committed against a special victim or involves a weapon. For example, assault with a dangerous weapon is defined in 21 OK Stat § 21-645 as an assault perpetrated with any instrument, implement, or tool capable of causing bodily harm. This crime is charged as a felony and punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
In the most extreme cases, such as assault with a deadly weapon or aggravated assault and battery on a law enforcement officer, there is a possibility of life in prison.
Alternatives to Jail Time
Deferred sentences and suspended sentences are two potential alternatives to jail time for an Oklahoma assault and battery charge. With a deferred sentence, the charge will not appear on your criminal record if you follow all court requirements. With a suspended sentence, you are found guilty, and the charge will appear on your criminal record.
Deferred Sentences for Assault and Battery in Oklahoma
A deferred sentence means that the court is not entering a judgment of guilt immediately. Instead, you'll be required to comply with conditions such as probation or community service for a specific period. Then, the judge will revisit the case and render a judgment. If you complete the requirements, the case will be dismissed. The judge can order jail time or other penalties if you do not.
Suspended Sentences for Assault and Battery in Oklahoma
A suspended sentence means the court has decided to suspend all or part of a jail sentence in favor of probation. If you receive a suspended sentence and successfully complete your supervised or unsupervised probation, you can avoid being behind bars. If you violate the terms of your probation, the judge can either impose additional restrictions or withdraw the suspended sentence and require you to serve out the remainder of the sentence in jail.
How a Criminal Defense Attorney Can Help
When you've been charged with assault and battery in Oklahoma, an experienced criminal defense attorney can work with you to determine the best approach to minimize the charge’s negative consequences. This may include requesting a deferred or suspended sentence, negotiating a plea bargain, or preparing for trial. Every case is unique, and crimes involving elements of coercive control in intimate partner relationships can be particularly challenging.
Request our free offer, Top 10 Ways You Are Killing Your Defense, to learn about the common mistakes we often see clients make and what you can do to move towards the best possible outcome for your case.
Have You Been Charged With a Violent Crime in Tulsa, OK?
If you or a loved one has been charged with a violent crime in the Tulsa, Oklahoma area, you need to speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call 918.384.0850 for your initial strategy session. We are proud to serve Tulsa and all surrounding areas.