Assault by Auto
New Jersey Assault by Automobile Lawyer
Assault by Auto is a criminal offense that results when a person drives recklessly and as a result, someone is physically injured. Assault by Auto can be a disorderly persons offense or it can be an indictable offense depending on the amount of injury caused and whether the driver was drunk or under the influence of drugs when the injury occurred. My name is Anthony N. Palumbo, Assault by Auto Attorney, and I have successfully defended individuals against charges of Assault by Auto in Union County, New Jersey for over 35 years.
If you have been arrested or charged for Assault by Auto in New Jersey, I can assist you with your case. Assault by Auto is a serious criminal offense, and a conviction can have a huge impact on your life. The upside is that there are many defenses available to charges of Assault by Auto . As an experienced New Jersey Assault by Auto Lawyer, I have successfully obtained hundreds of downgraded or dismissed charges of Assault by Auto for my clients. Contact me today for a free initial consultation by phone or in person at 908-643-6801 . I defend individuals throughout New Jersey including Monmouth County, Middlesex County, Union County, Ocean County, Somerset County, Essex County, Hudson County and Morris County.
Assault by Auto in New Jersey
Under N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1(C)(1), the applicable New Jersey Statute on Assault by Auto, the prosecution must prove two elements in order to obtain a conviction for Assault by Auto. A person is guilty of Assault by Auto when:
- The person drives a vehicle or vessel recklessly; and
- Causes either serious bodily injury or bodily injury to another.
Penalties if Convicted
Assault by Auto is a 4th degree crime if serious bodily injury results and is a disorderly persons offense if bodily injury results. A disorderly persons offense carries penalties of up to 6 months in prison and $1,000 in fines, and a 4th degree crime carries penalties of up to 18 months in prison if a conviction is obtained. However, in certain situations Assault by Auto can be upgraded to a greater charge.
3rd Degree Crime
Assault by Auto will be upgraded to a 3rd degree crime if the charge is a 4th degree crime and the driver is convicted of a DUI/DWI when the incident occurs. A conviction of this particular offense usually carries 5 to 10 years in prison.
2nd Degree Crime
Assault by Auto will be upgraded to a 2nd degree crime if 3rd degree Assault by Auto is committed and the driver is in a school zone. A conviction of this particular offense usually carries 10 to 20 years in prison.
Assault by Auto FAQs
- What constitutes Reckless Conduct under Assault by Auto? Reckless conduct is action manifesting extreme indifference to the well being of others. Acts that constitute reckless conduct include Speeding (N.J.S.A. 39:4-97), Careless Driving (N.J.S.A. 39:4-97) and Reckless Driving (N.J.S.A. 39:4-96). The court will take as a fact that the driver’s conduct was reckless if the driver was drunk at the time of the incident or refused to submit to a breathalyzer.
- What if I did not know that I was driving in a school zone when I was charged with 2nd degree Assault by Auto? It is no defense that the defendant was unaware that the prohibited conduct took place while on or within 1,000 feet of any school property or while driving through a school crossing. N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1(C)(1).
- Is it a defense to my case that no juveniles were present on the school property or crossing zone at the time of the offense? What about if the offense took place in the middle of the night? It is not a defense that juveniles were not present on the school property or crossing zone at the time of the incident, and it is likewise not a defense that the incident took place when school was not in session.
- What constitutes a “Vessel” under the statute? Can I be charged if I committed the act with a bicycle? A “vessel” is a means of conveyance for travel on water and propelled otherwise than by muscular power. N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1(C)(1). Therefore, the act cannot be committed while on a bicycle or similar contraption.
NJ Assault by Auto Attorney
Still have questions? Contact me today for a free initial consultation by phone or in person at 908-643-6801 . I know that being arrested for an offense this serious can be a frightening experience. I have been successfully defending charges of Assault by Auto for over 35 years, and at The Law Offices of Anthony N. Palumbo, you are in the best hands possible for your defense. I know how the system works and how to best mitigate the damage in your assault by auto charge. Come in today, and let’s talk about your case. I will listen to your story and develop a strong defense on your behalf.
In addition to Assault by Auto, I defend individuals of all Assault charges including Simple Assault, Aggravated Assault, Sexual Assault, Aggravated Sexual Assault, Domestic Assault, and Juvenile Assault throughout New Jersey including Monmouth County, Middlesex County, Union County, Ocean County, Somerset County, Essex County, Hudson County and Morris County.
I am Anthony N. Palumbo of the firm The Law Offices of Anthony N. Palumbo, located on 190 North Avenue, Cranford, New Jersey 07016 and 740 Newark Avenue, Elizabeth, New Jersey 07208.