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Even Simple Confrontations Can Be an Assault

On Behalf of | Dec 31, 2011 | Firm News |

Early yesterday morning a player for the Minnesota Vikings, Benny Sapp, was cited for Misdemeanor 5th Degree Assault and Careless Driving in Minneapolis.

Mr. Sapp allegedly was engaged in two confrontations with security officers at the Minneapolis Children’s Hospital. The first confrontation is alleged to have occurred when Mr. Sapp attempted to access a building through an unauthorized entrance. The police assert that Mr. Sapp chest bumped a security officer who would not allow Mr. Sapp to use the unauthorized entrance. Mr. Sapp then got back into his car and drove towards the exit. Supposedly as Mr. Sapp approached the exit another security guard stepped in front of Mr. Sapp’s vehicle to prevent Mr. Sapp from driving away. The police do not assert that Mr. Sapp’s vehicle struck either security guard.

Under Minnesota law, Misdemeanor 5th Degree Assault occurs when you:

  • Commit an act with intent to cause fear in another of immediate bodily harm or death; or
  • Intentionally inflict or attempt to inflict bodily harm upon another.

The penalties for Misdemeanor 5th Degree Assault in Minnesota can include up to 90 days in jail and a fine of $1,000.

What does this mean for you?

Even conduct that does not result in physically harming or contacting another person can be sufficient to commit 5th Degree Assault. The mere intentional threat of immediate bodily harm can be sufficient. In other words, you don’t have to have to punch someone to commit assault; merely threatening to punch someone can be enough.

If you have or believe you may be charged with 5th Degree Assault, contact a Minneapolis Criminal Defense Attorney for a free consultation. You have rights and it is important to have someone fighting to protect your rights.