What Are Your Defense Options When Charged With a Violent Crime?

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Minneapolis Violent Crimes Defense Lawyer Kirk Anderson

Among all crimes you can commit, violent crimes are considered the most serious by society. If you attacked someone with force, that can easily result in the injury of others and even sometimes death. As such, the criminal justice system needs to be diligent in pursuing criminal offenders to keep order. However, if you have been arrested for a violent crime, it doesn’t automatically mean jail time even if you are guilty. Your lawyer can help craft a defense to prevent or at least minimize your punishments. So what defense options may be available for your violent crime case?


Common in assault cases, you may not have meant to hurt another person. Instead, you felt threatened yourself and lashed out in order to protect yourself from a threat. You have the legal right to use violence in order to act in your own defense. However, this strategy needs to be able to prove that you reacted with reasonable force to a threat. Obviously if someone shoved you in a bar fight, it would not be reasonable force to shoot them with a firearm. It is also crucial in this defense that you stopped the attack after the threat was dissipated. For example, brutally beating an unconscious person can quickly go from self-defense to assault.

Defense of Others

Like defending yourself, you have the right to use violence in order to protect others. If you witnessed someone else being beaten, you would be able to say that you were acting in their defense by attacking their attacker. However, again, you need to show that reasonable force was used and did not go overboard.

Defense of Property

This defense is less likely to work than other defense strategies as the courts might not really consider you defending another’s property as a defense. If you were defending your own home or used violence to retrieve property, such as if you chased down a purse-snatcher, it may apply. Although these cases are rather rare, in the right circumstance it can be a valid avenue to pursue.

Lack of Intent

In most crimes in the criminal justice system, a large part of the prosecutor’s job is to prove that you have the intent to commit a crime. It is often the same in violent crime. If you were intoxicated or lacked the mental capacity at the time, it can be argued that you lacked the intent to commit a violent crime. This defense strategy can also be used in more difficult cases to limit the charges and potential punishment against you. As an example, robbery is considered a violent crime because it requires the use or threat of force. However, if your lawyer can prove that you lacked the threat or intention of force, the crime cannot be a higher degree of robbery, something that carries a much lower maximum punishment.

Need Help? Contact Kirk Anderson Today!

In most violent crime cases, self-defense is often the most valid defense route to take, but it all depends on the evidence available to support or disprove it. That being said, every violent crime case is different and the circumstances of which often vary widely. This is why it is so crucial to have a lawyer that has the time to sit down with you and discuss all your options before crafting an effective defense strategy.

If you are in Minneapolis and have been arrested for any violent crime, contact us today. The Anderson Law Office is dedicated to representing those arrested for crimes to make sure they don’t suffer the unfair punishments that come out of the criminal justice system. Let us help you.

DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this article does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Please contact attorney Kirk Anderson for an initial consultation.