Los Angeles Assault Defense Lawyer

Were you recently charged with assault or another similar type of crime in Los Angeles, California? These are serious offenses that can lead to life-changing consequences. However, the prosecution must meet a heavy burden to convict you, and there is still time to fight back.

The Law Office of Ryan Peabody is here to help protect your rights every step of the way. Our Los Angeles assault defense lawyer has more than a decade of experience. In that time, he’s helped clients achieve successful outcomes, including many not-guilty verdicts at trial, even when up against some of the most serious offenses on the books. He’s ready to help you too, as soon as you’re ready. 

Contact us today to get started with a free consultation at (310) 709-2000. At that time, we’ll review your case and provide you with some initial legal advice. 

How the Law Office of Ryan Peabody Can Help if You’ve Been Charged With Assault in Los Angeles

How the Law Office of Ryan Peabody Can Help if You’ve Been Charged With Assault in Los Angeles

Assault charges range in severity, but jail time is almost always a possibility. And among the more serious types of offenses in this area of the law, the resulting consequences can jeopardize your freedom forever. This is not the time to cut corners; you need an experienced criminal defense attorney who will vigorously defend you with the utmost dedication and passion.

Los Angeles criminal defense attorney Ryan Peabody has the skills and experience to represent you effectively throughout the entire process. As a former public defender, he understands the criminal justice system as well as anyone – and has taken countless cases all the way to trial. When you hire him and the rest of our legal team, you can rest assured that your interests will be asserted at all times. We’ll get to work by:

  • Thoroughly looking at the prosecution’s case against you so that we can formulate a plan of action
  • Conducting comprehensive research and investigatory work to make your defense as strong as we can
  • Advising you on your legal options as your case progresses
  • Working hard to have your charges dismissed or reduced if possible
  • Representing you at all court proceedings, including trial

Ready to form an attorney-client relationship? Contact our law offices in Los Angeles, CA, today to set up your free case review.

Overview of Assault Charges in California

There are many crimes that fall under the category of assault in California. As with most states, California treats assault and battery as two separate offenses. Some versions of these crimes can carry more significant penalties and consequences if certain factors are present. 


Assault is defined under California Penal Code Section 240. Per state law, assault “is an unlawful attempt, coupled with a present ability, to commit a violent injury on the person of another.”

Importantly, this means that you can be charged with “simple assault,” as this crime is often referred to as, even if you don’t actually end up hurting the alleged victim. Generally, this offense is a misdemeanor.


Battery is a more serious charge than assault in most cases and is covered under California Penal Code Section 242. This charge “is any willful and unlawful use of force or violence upon the person of another.”

Again, the victim need not sustain an injury for you to be charged with battery – as is the case with assault. However, unlike assault, there must be proof of some sort of violent contact. 

Battery is usually a misdemeanor; however, if the alleged victim sustained an injury, it could be charged as a felony, depending on the facts of the case (see below).

Aggravated Battery

Aggravated battery is described by California Penal Code Section 243(d). This offense may be charged if a battery results in a serious injury. 

A serious injury does not necessarily mean one that is long-term in nature or that requires extensive medical care. Instead, it generally means an injury that causes a physical or cognitive impairment. Many types of injuries could be considered serious in this context.

Aggravated battery is what is called a “wobbler” offense, meaning the prosecution can bring the charges as either a misdemeanor or felony – in accordance with the circumstances of the specific case.

Assault With a Deadly Weapon or Force Likely to Produce Great Bodily Injury

Assault with a deadly weapon is the more serious version of assault under California law, covered by Penal Code Section 245(a)(1)-(4). As the name suggests, this offense means committing an assault with a deadly weapon or force likely to produce great bodily injury. A weapon can be a gun or a knife, but it can also be any object that is wielded in such a manner that it is likely to produce great bodily injury.

Penal Code section 245(a)(4) does not require a weapon. That subsection only requires force likely to produce great bodily injury. Unlike Penal Code section 245(a)(1)-(3), Penal Code section 245(a)(4) is not a strike under the “Three-Strikes Law.”

Like with aggravated battery, assault with a deadly weapon is a “wobbler” offense and may be asserted as either a felony or misdemeanor. 

What Are the Penalties of an Assault Conviction in Los Angeles, CA?

The penalties vary greatly depending on which assault crimes you are charged with. A felony-level offense means you could be looking at prison or probation with or without county jail time. The length of the potential sentence also varies greatly depending on whether a weapon was used or if there was a force likely to produce great bodily injury. If there was a gun used, the possible length of the sentence is greater. Please call our office for a free consultation to discuss your specific case and charges.

Collateral Consequences

There are other consequences you could face if you are convicted of assault, especially if you are convicted of a felony. These may include:

  • Immigration issues, if relevant to your situation
  • Difficulty finding housing or obtaining employment
  • Loss of certain rights, such as firearm ownership

Hiring an experienced criminal defense attorney is the best way to fight back and achieve a favorable result. 

What Defenses Can I Raise Against My Assault Charges in Los Angeles?

There are many ways to respond to assault charges in Los Angeles. Remember that the prosecution needs to prove every element of your offense “beyond a reasonable doubt,” the highest burden of proof standard in the law. 

That leaves your lawyer with a lot of room to operate when it comes to defending you. Although the specifics of your case will dictate the options available to you, possible defenses include:

  • You were acting in self-defense or defending another person
  • It was a case of mistaken identity, or you have an alibi for the alleged incident
  • You did not have the required state of mind, such as an intent to cause harm
  • There is insufficient evidence against you
  • You were falsely accused

Upon hiring us, we will thoroughly investigate your case and the prosecution’s evidence against you so that we can determine your best course of action. Call today to learn more.

Schedule a Free Case Review With Our Los Angeles Assault Defense Attorney

Were you charged with assault or another similar type of criminal offense in Los Angeles, CA? At the Law Office of Ryan Peabody, our Los Angeles assault defense attorney is here to aggressively and passionately represent you from the beginning.

We offer a free consultation to discuss your legal rights and options. Contact our Los Angeles, CA law firm by phone or online to schedule a time to meet. 

Visit Our Criminal Defense Law Firm in Los Angeles, CA

Law Office of Ryan Peabody
5757 W Century Blvd #722
Los Angeles, CA 90045, United States

(310) 709-2000

Our criminal defense law firm in Los Angeles, CA, also provides the following: