Michigan Criminal Law: Assaultive Crimes; Felonious Assault

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Allegations involving acts of violence of varying degrees are prevalent in the criminal justice system. Felonious Assault shares the same elements of an Assault or Assault and Battery charge and the prosecutor must also prove that the party “assaults another person with a gun, revolver, pistol, knife, iron bar, club, brass knuckles, or other dangerous weapon without intending to commit murder or to inflict great bodily harm less than murder.” MCL 750.82 (1).

The maximum penalties for Felonious assault charges depend on whether a person has priors, the alleged facts, and other factors; however the maximum possible penalty starts as “ a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 4 years or a fine of not more than $2,000.00, or both” MCL 750.82 (1) and goes up.

There are additional penalties if a person is convicted and the alleged act occurred at a school zone. MCL 750.82 (2).

As the Model Jury Instruction explains, a prosecutor must prove:

(1)  [The defendant is charged with the crime of / You may also consider the lesser charge of1] felonious assault. To prove this charge, the prosecutor must prove each of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

(2) First, that the defendant either attempted to commit a battery on [name complainant] or did an act that would cause a reasonable person to fear or apprehend an immediate battery. A battery is a forceful or violent touching of the person or something closely connected with the person.2

(3) Second, that the defendant intended either to injure [name complainant] or to make [name complainant] reasonably fear an immediate battery.

(4) Third, that at the time, the defendant had the ability to commit a battery, appeared to have the ability, or thought [he / she] had the ability.

(5) Fourth, that the defendant committed the assault with a [state dangerous weapon alleged] .3

M. Crim. JI. 17.9.

This charge, as noted in the instruction, may be added as a “lesser” offense to other, more serious felony charges because it shares a lot of common elements with other assaultive crimes. M. Crim. JI. 17.9

Our experienced trial attorneys fight hard for our Michigan clients. We represent clients statewide. For a free initial consultation, feel free to contact us at (517) 507-5077.

For information on Assault Causing Great Bodily Harm, click here.
For information on Assault With Intent to Commit Murder, click here.
For information on Domestic Assault & Battery, click here.
For information on Interference with an Electronic Communications Device, click here.
For information on Assault and Battery (Misdemeanor), click here.
For information on Assault by Strangulation, click here.

Anyone charged, of course, is presumed innocent. The prosecutor would need to prove the elements of the offense beyond a reasonable doubt if the matter proceeded to trial. Simply because a person is charged does not mean that ultimately, they will be convicted.
If you need specific legal advice for your particular circumstances, I encourage you to privately consult with a lawyer. Circumstances may vary significantly. If you need specific legal advice, please privately consult with a lawyer.

If you are charged with an offense and cannot afford to pay for your own defense, the court may appoint you an attorney payable at the public’s expense. You have a right to counsel.