According to the World Health Organization, alcohol is more closely associated with aggressive behavior than any other drug. Unfortunately, this makes bar fights a common occurrence in DuPage County and throughout the state. Police are often called to the scene when a bar fight results in serious injury. In the chaotic aftermath of a fight, police may not immediately know which parties are the aggressors and which are the victims. If you were arrested after a bar fight, you may be facing charges for assault or aggravated assault. These offenses are punishable by significant criminal consequences, including imprisonment so it is important to take action right away.
Do Not Let Police Interrogate You Without a Lawyer
In Illinois, assault is a Class C misdemeanor offense. It is punishable by up to 30 days in jail and a maximum $1,500 fine. If the defendant allegedly threatened to use or used a firearm, or if the offense was directed at certain protected persons, the charge may be elevated to aggravated assault. Aggravated assault charges vary, but someone convicted of aggravated assault in Illinois may face up to several years in prison. Therefore, it is important to do whatever you can to avoid conviction.
The first step is contacting a lawyer. Do not let police interrogate you with your attorney present. You could do or say something in the heat of the moment that damages your chances of avoiding conviction. If the police question you about the circumstances of the fight, your relationship to the other parties involved in the fight, or anything else, do not answer. State that you are asserting your right to remain silent and then say nothing.
Work With Your Attorney to Build a Strong Defense
An experienced criminal defense attorney will help you build a compelling defense against assault charges. Often, people involved in a fight only fight back because they are defending themselves. To successfully claim self-defense, you will need to demonstrate that there was a threat of unlawful force against you, you feared for your safety, and you could not otherwise escape the situation....