The crime of aggravated assault upon an officer or protected class is meant to protect specific civil servants in Philadelphia and Pennsylvania. Obviously police officers and personnel are protected; however, Judges, prosecutors, public defenders, fire personnel, emergency personnel and other essential individual serving both city and state municipalities are also covered.
This crime was created by the Pennsylvania legislature to discourage an accused from assaulting an individual who has a duty to protect or aid the accused. This means that crimes against these protected classes are treated in a harsh manner requiring the aid of an experienced Philadelphia assault on a police officer lawyer to fight for your rights.
The penalties for assault on an officer or protected class in Philadelphia can be harsh. Charged as a felony of the second degree an individual may be sentenced to up to 10 years’ incarceration and thousands of dollars in fines. Because the courts wish to discourage such behavior sentences for these crimes are often aggravated. This cause an individual who may be falsely accused the added pressure of facing a jail sentence. If the case is handled appropriately by an experienced Philadelphia assault lawyer a lesser sentence and even an acquittal of all charges can be the final result. My office has successfully handled thousands of assault on police officer cases over two decades.
Assault on a police officer or other protected class is most often charged during an emergency situation. Usually when police are called to respond to a violent act or emergency personnel are attempting to remove a crowd, often tempers are high and these situations lead to such arrests.
Additionally, domestic disputes often lead to assault on police officer charges as well as bar and street fights. In all of these scenarios police or other protected classes are called to aid the public and often become tangled up in the altercation itself. In order to avoid such confrontations an individual should reach out and seek the services of an experienced Philadelphia assault lawyer to prevent an innocent situation from turning into a felony assault.
This type of case always begins at the preliminary hearing level of the Philadelphia Municipal Court. Once the matter proceeds further it will be tried in the Court of Common Pleas Criminal Trial Level. In either case a judge or jury will decide the outcome of a particular case. Both courts are located in the Juanita Kidd Stout Criminal Justice Center located at 1301 Filbert Street in the Center City section of Philadelphia.