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In a physical confrontation, there’s a fine line in the difference between assault and self-defense, but the distinction is critically important since the punishment for even a misdemeanor assault charge (3rd-degree assault) can bring jail time.

The best way to explain the distinction between assault and self-defense is to describe the types of actions that are legally considered self-defense, realizing that if the physical encounter doesn’t fall within those boundaries, it could be considered assault.

If you have any questions about representation in an assault or self-defense matter in Denver or the surrounding counties, don’t hesitate to call Wolf Law today at (720) 479-8574 and talk with an assault defense lawyer.

Colorado’s self-defense laws allow people to:

  1. Defend a person (yourself or another person) from physical force; however, the use of deadly force is only allowed if it appears the attacker may seriously assault, kidnap, or sexually assault the person.
  2. Defend themselves within their own residence. Known as the “Make My Day Law,” in this case the use of deadly force is allowed as long as it appears that intruder might commit a crime (including robbery) and that the intruder might use physical force. This right to use deadly force is only allowed inside the residence. If the intruder is on the porch, at the door, in the yard or has left the premises, the relatively low threshold that allows for use of deadly force under Make My Day is no longer in effect.
  3. Defend a premises or other property (other than their home which is covered in #2). The ability to use deadly force in this environment comes with the same restrictions as in #1.

Most other physical altercations between people could be considered assault but in a different post, we list out some different scenarios on what could be assault or self-defense.

If you are charged with assault in Colorado, you may be charged with one of three levels:

  1. 3rd-degree assault, a misdemeanor, is knowingly or recklessly causing bodily injury to someone. The standard for bodily injury is very low—causing momentary pain could be included in the definition.
  2. 2nd-degree assault, a felony, is either assault using a deadly weapon or causing serious bodily injury. In some circumstances, a punch or a kick could be considered an assault.
  3. 1st-degree assault, is causing serious bodily injury, much like 2nd-degree assault, however, the bodily injury is inflicted through the use of a deadly weapon.

For both 1st and 2nd Degree assaults (collectively referred to as “crimes of violence”) the intent to cause injury must be proven. Self-defense is one possible defense that can be used in these cases.

Also, proving that the attack was a “crime of passion” committed in the “heat of the moment” could be a mitigating factor that could lessen the charge. However, if convicted of 1st or 2nd-degree assault there are mandatory prison sentences of 10-32 years under 1st degree and 5-16 years for 2nd-degree charges.

If you’ve been arrested for assault or have been involved in a self-defense altercation in the Denver area, you need expert legal guidance. Wolf Law has experienced criminal defense attorneys serving Coloradans facing criminal charges. Contact Wolf Law today for a free consultation.

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If one were to Google all the attributes that you want in legal representation, Wolf Law would check off each box. His entire staff is helpful and professional. As for Mr. Wolf himself, his expertise and straight-talk are exactly what you want and need in an attorney. The outcome of my case matched my most optimistic goal. I thoroughly endorse Wolf Law.

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I called Jeff and talked to him about my case. His experience in this area put me at ease. Jeff guided me through everything I needed to do to see this case through. The greatest thing is that I never had to leave home to clear this up. At the end of the day Jeff cleared my case (Case Dismissed) without me ever leaving Boston. Jeff is incredible, and his team is equally amazing.

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Jeffrey Wolf has been a beacon of hope to me when my situation seemed limited and unlikely of a positive outcome. He represented me for a DUI and as a domestic violence victim and did a phenomenal job on both. Not only was he able to defend and represent me, but his empathetic and ethical demeanor offered hope to myself and someone I truly care about. My partner and I are eternally grateful for his service, and I hereby recommend him without hesitation since I could not imagine a better result without him representing me.

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When you get charged with a crime it is tough to deal with, mostly because you are embarrassed and disappointed with yourself for what you have done. I was charged with theft and was very worried about what type of impact that would have on my business professional career when applying for jobs. I contacted a few lawyers but knew that Jeff was the right direction to take. He made me feel more at ease knowing that people make mistakes and that this would not effect my whole life. He was very helpful and quick to respond to any questions or concerns that I had.

During my time with Jeff he made me feel very comfortable and I knew going into everything what to expect, what to say, and how to present myself. Whether you hire a lawyer or not is your own decision. But to me what Jeff was able to provide was well worth it. I literally told him my story, how I felt and what type of outcome I was looking for on the first day. Besides showing up with him to court he did everything else and took care of everything. We were sentenced to the verdict that we were looking for and now I can move forward and put this case behind me. Thanks for all your help Jeff it was much appreciated.

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I’m a college student in a highly prestigious nursing school. After a night of drinking, my now ex-girlfriend and I got into a heated argument that landed me with domestic violence charges. I thought my career was over and the tens of thousands of dollars I spent on multiple years of school were all for nothing. However, Mr. Wolf was able to get two of my three charges dismissed altogether (one of them being the most serious) without us even walking into the courtroom. When we got to court, he was able to get me a deferred sentence–the best possible scenario. All in all, Wolf Law is hands-down the best in the Denver area. They are the reason I can still pursue my career goals.

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I turned to Wolf Law for help after a small bumper ding in a Starbucks parking lot escalated once the Denver PD was involved. Jeff expertly stepped in to keep the matter from getting any more complex, including speaking with a Denver Police Officer who seemed intent on imposing the most severe charges possible. Jeff continued his zealous representation of my case in Traffic Court where he worked out a reduction in the ticket with the Denver City Attorney and also eloquently explained the situation and the facts at hand to the judge, resulting in a reduction in the fine. Wolf Law exceeded my expectations on this case and managed to keep me calm about the severity of the charges throughout the process. I would highly recommend Wolf Law to anyone and everyone, and if I ever have the need, I will definitely hire Mr. Wolf again.

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I got my first DUI in April when I fell asleep in my car because I couldn’t get inside my house. I knew I needed a lawyer to help me fight the case but I was really hesitant on who I wanted to hire. I came across Jeffrey Wolf and I couldn’t be any happier that I chose him to represent me. Jeffrey is not only very professional but he can also relate to you on a personal level. Since it was my first offense I had no idea what to expect or what I was doing. He guided me through the whole process and I was very pleased with the results. He was able to convince the Judge to let me off with 6 months of unsupervised probation and level 1 education classes. Jeffrey is very loyal and a wonderful lawyer, definitely hiring him again if need be.

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Jeff Wolf was recommended to me by a colleague I have known since my youth. Accordingly, I met with Jeff. I also met with other attorneys in the Denver area in preparation for my legal issues. I decided to choose Jeff because I had a good feeling about him from the moment I met him and because his ethics and views regarding the vision for his legal practice were aligned with what I hoped for despite having no experience in the legal system previously.

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Jeff accepted a traffic violation case with not a ton of time to prepare. He provided clear instructions on how to proceed with the initial hearing in order for this individual to receive an extension and time to gain attorney representation. From there, he continued take the extra steps necessary to not only communicate effectively and clearly but also provide a level of advocacy that was necessary for this vulnerable individual! Thanks Jeff — Your work, patience and understanding is greatly appreciated!

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