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By Michael Arbeit
Founding Attorney

Assault charges are serious criminal offenses that can result in significant legal consequences, including substantial fines and lengthy prison sentences. However, depending on the specific circumstances of your case, it may be possible to have your assault charges reduced or even dismissed entirely.


One of the most common defenses against assault charges is self-defense. If you can demonstrate that you were acting in self-defense or in defense of another person, your charges may be dismissed or reduced. To successfully argue self-defense, you must show that you reasonably believed that you or someone else was in imminent danger of physical harm and that the force you used was necessary to protect against that threat.

Lack of Evidence

In some cases, authorities may dismiss assault charges due to insufficient evidence. The prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed the alleged assault. If there is little or no physical evidence, conflicting witness statements, or other weaknesses in the prosecution’s case, your attorney may be able to argue for a dismissal of the charges.

Plea Bargaining

Plea bargaining is when your attorney negotiates with the prosecution to reach an agreement that reduces your charges or sentence in exchange for a guilty plea. This can be an effective strategy when the evidence against you is strong and the likelihood of conviction at trial is high. By agreeing to plead guilty to a lesser charge, such as a misdemeanor instead of a felony, you may be able to avoid more severe penalties

Pretrial Diversion Programs

Some jurisdictions offer pretrial diversion programs for first-time offenders or those charged with minor assault offenses. These programs allow defendants to complete specific requirements, such as anger management classes or community service, in exchange for the dismissal of their charges. If you successfully complete the program, a judge may dismiss your charges, and you can avoid a criminal conviction on your record.

Challenging the Arrest

If your arrest was unlawful or your constitutional rights were violated during the arrest process, your attorney may be able to challenge the validity of the arrest. This could lead to the suppression of evidence obtained due to the illegal arrest, which may weaken the prosecution’s case against you and potentially result in a dismissal of the charges.

Mutual Combat

In some instances, assault charges may arise from a situation in which both parties were actively engaged in a fight. If your attorney can demonstrate that the alleged assault was a case of mutual combat, where both individuals consented to the physical altercation, the charges against you may be reduced or dismissed.

Mistaken Identity

If someone wrongly accused you of assault due to mistaken identity, your attorney can gather evidence to prove your innocence.

This may include presenting alibis, witness statements, or video footage that shows you were not present at the scene of the alleged assault.

Mental Health Issues 

If you were suffering from a mental health condition at the time of the alleged assault, your attorney may be able to argue that this played a significant role in your actions. In some cases, the court may be willing to consider alternative sentencing options, such as mental health treatment or counseling, in lieu of traditional criminal penalties. This approach can help address the underlying issues contributing to the assault and reduce the likelihood of future offenses.

Contact Our Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyer Michael A. Arbeit, P.C.

It is essential to remember that every assault case is unique, and the strategies available to you will depend on the specific facts and circumstances surrounding your charges. An experienced criminal defense attorney, like Michael A. Arbeit, P.C., can evaluate your case and develop a tailored defense strategy to help you achieve the best possible outcome.

If you are facing assault charges, do not hesitate to seek legal guidance. Contact Michael A. Arbeit, P.C. today for a free and confidential consultation. With personalized, aggressive representation and a commitment to integrity and professionalism, We will fight tirelessly to protect your rights and help you navigate the complex criminal justice system.

Michael A. Arbeit, P.C. assists clients throughout Long Island including Nassau County, Suffolk County, Garden City, and New York, including Queens, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Staten Island, and The Bronx.

About the Author
Michael A. Arbeit, P.C. is devoted to all Criminal Defense and  Traffic related matters.  Michael practices primarily in the Criminal and County (Supreme) Courts in Nassau County, Suffolk County, Queens County, Kings County, New York County and the Bronx County.  Michael is also licensed to practice law in the Federal Courts of the Eastern District of New York (EDNY) and the Southern District of New York (SDNY).