Getting into an altercation is not an ideal situation. However, individuals in Iowa and other states could find themselves in this predicament. Because this can be a hostile and even dangerous situation, this could result in law enforcement being called. If a person is arrested following an altercation, he or she could be charged with an assault. In these matters, it is important to understand the definition of this crime, what evidence has been collected and how this information could be used to assert a defense against these allegations.
What is the definition of assault in the state of Iowa? A person commits an assault when he or she, without justification, does any act that is intended to cause pain or injury or result in physical contact that is insulting or offensive to another person and that person has the apparent ability to execute the act.
An assault also occurs when a person commits an act that is intended to place another person in fear of immediate physical contact that would be painful, injurious, insulting or offensive and he or she has the ability to execute the act. Finally, an assault could also occur when a person intentionally points a firearm toward another person or displays any dangerous weapon toward another person in a threatening manner.
It is not an assault if any of these above acts occur between or among voluntary participants in a sport, social or other activity that is not criminal and is a reasonably foreseeable incident. Additionally, it is not an assault if a person is accused of the above acts, he or she is employed by a school district and he or she is intervening in a fight, physical struggle or other disruptive situation.
When accused of committing an assault, it is important to understand the elements of the crime one is accused of and what defense options are available. By poking holes in the case, a defendant could clear their name, helping to avoid harsh penalties.