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Can I Claim Self-Defense When Facing Assault or Battery Charges?

DuPage County criminal defense attorneyViolent crimes are serious charges that come with significant legal consequences. Many violent crimes can easily escalate to felony charges, which can mean expensive fines and lengthy periods of jail time. Sometimes, actions that led to assault or battery charges may have been taken to defend yourself against another person. The state of Illinois recognizes that you have the right to protect yourself, your property, or other people if there is a threat present. In certain situations, you have the right to perform an act of force that would otherwise be an illegal act if it was not done in self-defense. If you have been charged with a violent crime such as assault or battery, and you believe you acted in self-defense, you should seek immediate assistance from a criminal defense attorney.

Defending Yourself or Others

Illinois law allows you to use force against another person if you reasonably believe that the use of such force is necessary to defend yourself or another against a person’s imminent use of unlawful force. However, there are lines that you cannot cross if you plan on using self-defense as a legitimate explanation. To have a believable self-defense argument, you have to prove that:

  • A person used unlawful force to threaten you or another person;

  • The force you used was necessary to protect yourself or another person; and

  • The other person’s imminent use of unlawful force was the only reason you used force.  

The presence of imminent danger is very important in self-defense cases. If you or another person is in imminent danger, then the threat of harm was present and immediate. If you use force as self-defense, the imminent danger must be unlawful force, which includes crimes such as assault, robbery, sexual assault or abuse, and domestic violence

Defending Your Property

The state of Illinois also allows you to use force if you believe the use of that force will prevent or stop someone from unlawfully entering or attacking your property. If you use deadly force (force that is likely to cause death or great bodily harm), it is only justified if:

  • You used the deadly force to prevent a felony from being committed on your property; or

  • Someone entered or attempted to enter your property in a violent or riotous manner, and your use of deadly force was the only way to prevent harm from yourself or others on your property.

A Naperville, IL Violent Crimes Defense Lawyer Can Help You Form a Solid Defense

If you have been charged with a crime because you were defending yourself, you need help from an experienced DuPage County criminal defense attorney. At the Davi Law Group, LLC, we can help you build a defense against any type of violent crime that you may be charged with, including assault and battery charges. Our knowledgeable legal team can form a thorough and effective defense demonstrating why you were justified in your use of force. To schedule a free consultation, call our office today at 630-580-6373.

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=072000050HArt%2E+7&ActID=1876&ChapterID=53&SeqStart=8300000&SeqEnd=9900000

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