Assault by Automobile
New Jersey Law contains specific provisions for assault cases involving automobiles. Each case is unique, and charges can range from disorderly persons offense to a Second Degree offense based on the circumstances surrounding the auto assault. Depending on the severity of the charge, automobile assault can carry penalties such as serious fines and even jail time. Contact the lawyers at Ellis Law for an attorney skilled in automobile assault to help you with your case.
In New Jersey, an individual can be found guilty of assault by automobile if they commit all of the following:
- That individual was the operator of the motor vehicle
- The individual engaged in conduct that was reckless
- The individual caused an accident
- Injury was caused to another person as a result of this reckless conduct
For conduct to be considered reckless, it must involve actions displaying extreme indifference to the welfare of others. Examples of recklessness include speeding, drunk driving, or refusal of the driver to submit to a breath test.
Assault by automobile where the conduct results in “bodily injury” to another is a disorderly persons offense in the state of New Jersey. In this case, the driver of the automobile has consciously disregarded any risk of injury to others which resulted in injury or harm to another individual. Penalties for a disorderly persons offense include fines, probation, and up to 6 months in jail.
If the assault by automobile results in “serious bodily injury” to another, the crime is considered a Fourth Degree Offense. This is distinguished from a disorderly persons charge by the extent of the bodily injury. Cases involving serious injury, as opposed to simple injury, result in a Fourth Degree Assault by Automobile charge. Conviction of Fourth Degree assault by auto charge increases the possible jail time to 18 months.
If the assault by auto charge involves driving under the influence of alcohol, the charge is much more serious. In an assault by auto case that results in “serious bodily injury” from a DWI related accident, the charge is a Third Degree criminal offense. In this case of a DWI related accident resulting in serious injury to another person, the defendant faces 5 to 10 years in jail. If a Third Degree assault by charge is committed in a school zone, the charge is increased to a Second Degree Offense. A Second Degree assault by auto charge can involve 10 to 20 years of jail time.
In any case involving assault by automobile, hiring a skilled attorney to assist you will offer your best chances at defense. Our attorneys at Ellis Law have years of experience defending traffic related criminal cases. Contact us online or call 888-355-4752 for a consultation 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.