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James N. Papirmeister, P.C.

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What happens if a firearm is used during an assault?


An assault charge is an example of a violent crime in Maryland. Like some other categories of criminal charges, such as drug charges or sex-offense charges, violent crime charges come with a stigma that can remain even if the defendant is acquitted of the crime or the charges are dismissed. Individuals in Maryland who face violent crime charges often find that others may have certain pre-conceived notions about the type of person they are.

However, it is important for our readers to know that there are various levels of assault charges. For example, what happens if a firearm is alleged to have been used in an assault? Well, in Maryland and in most other states, the results can be quite severe.

Assault involves the threat of physical violence to another person. When a firearm is involved, the threat that is allegedly presented to the other person increases - serious bodily injury could be a factor. When this is the case, the level of the assault charge can be more serious, and the potential sentence upon conviction can be more severe.

For instance, in Maryland, a first-degree assault charge comes with the potential for a prison sentence of up to 25 years. Obviously, the consequences are severe for anyone who is facing an assault charge, which they should consider when planning a criminal defense strategy. A jury trial may be one option, but plea negotiations with the prosecutor may yield a more palatable result if the charges or sentence can be reduced.

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