Knowing the offense of criminal assault against a pregnant woman in Nebraska is essential for those facing such charges. Nebraska law recognizes the vulnerability of pregnant women and treats offenses against them with increased severity. The following information addresses what constitutes an offense against a pregnant woman, covering a range of actions from assault to sexual abuse. Individuals can also get clarification on potential defenses and the reasons for hiring a criminal defense lawyer if charged.

Lawyers for Assault Charges in Omaha

The attorneys at Liberty Law Group recognize the difficulty and emotional complexity surrounding domestic abuse cases, and are ready to provide full-service representation for our clients.

If you or a loved one have been charged with domestic violence, call our firm at (402) 865-0501 to request a free consultation to discuss the facts of your case.

Assault Against a Pregnant Woman in Nebraska

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What is an Assault Against a Pregnant Woman in Nebraska?

Nebraska Revised Statute 28-115 defines criminal offenses against a pregnant woman as specific harmful acts committed against her. The law covers a range of offenses, including:

  • Different degrees of assault, where the severity is based on the extent of harm or intention behind the act. This can range from causing serious physical injury to threatening or causing minor harm.
  • Assault by strangulation or suffocation.
  • Various forms of sexual assault and abuse, including those involving force or lack of consent.
  • Domestic assault, which involves violent or threatening behavior within a family or domestic setting.
  • Causing serious injury while operating a motor vehicle, which refers to incidents where a driver causes significant harm to others.

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What are the Penalties for Assault of a Pregnant Woman in Nebraska?

In Nebraska, the penalties for the offense of assaulting a pregnant woman are determined based on the classification of the original assault offense and its enhancement under Nebraska Revised Statute 28-115. This law basically says that if a person commits an assault offense against a pregnant woman, the penalty is escalated to a higher classification than what is typically imposed for that offense. This means:

  • If the original offense is a Class I Misdemeanor, it would be enhanced to a Class IV Felony. The penalties for a Class IV Felony include 0-2 years in prison followed by 9-12 months of post-release supervision and/or up to a $10,000 fine.
  • If the original offense is a Class II Misdemeanor, it would be enhanced to a Class I Misdemeanor. The penalties for a Class I Misdemeanor include up to 1 year in jail and/or up to a $1,000 fine.

These enhanced penalties are specifically applicable when the victim is known to be pregnant at the time of the offense. This fact must be established by a prosecutor beyond a reasonable doubt for the enhanced penalty to be applied. The enhancement does not apply to offenses already classified under the most severe felony categories, including Class I, IB, and IA felonies.

Depending on the circumstances and the court’s approval, a person charged with the offense of assault against a pregnant woman in Nebraska may be eligible for probation, including participation in pre-plea and post-plea programs, as an alternative to a jail sentence.

Probation is generally considered for individuals who are believed capable of rehabilitating in a community setting rather than through incarceration. In cases of assault against a pregnant woman, which are often treated with enhanced severity under Nebraska law, the eligibility for probation or diversion programs might be more restricted compared to other assault cases.

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Potential Defenses to a Charge of Assault of a Pregnant Woman

A major defense could be the absence of intent to cause harm. Assault typically requires an intentional act. If it can be shown that any harm caused was accidental or incidental rather than a result of intentional actions, this could be a viable defense.

Mistaken identity or false accusation is another defense. The accused might argue that they were not the person who committed the alleged assault or that the charges are based on incorrect information or a misunderstanding.

Another potential defense is self-defense. If the accused can demonstrate that their actions were a reasonable and necessary response to an immediate threat to their own safety or the safety of others, this can be a valid defense against the charge.

In addition, a defense might be built around questioning the reliability and sufficiency of the evidence. This could involve challenging the prosecution’s evidence or presenting contradictory evidence that raises reasonable doubt about the accused’s guilt.

Arguing lack of knowledge of the victim’s pregnancy does not serve as a defense; however, defending on the grounds that the victim was not pregnant could be effective for this particular crime.

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What Does a Criminal Defense Lawyer Do for Someone Facing Charges of Assault of a Pregnant Woman?

A criminal defense lawyer assists a client in Nebraska who is charged with assaulting a pregnant woman or other violent offenses in the state. They start by examining the details of the case and developing a strategy for defense. The lawyer first ensures the client understands their rights and the specific charges against them. They then gather evidence, which may include witness statements, surveillance footage, and medical reports, to build a factual basis for the defense.

The lawyer explores various defense angles, such as self-defense or lack of intent, aiming to create reasonable doubt about the client’s guilt. The lawyer also negotiates with prosecutors, potentially securing a plea deal that reduces charges or penalties. If the case goes to trial, the lawyer represents the client in court, presenting evidence and arguments to the judge or jury.

Throughout the process, the lawyer keeps the client informed, advising them on legal options and likely outcomes. The lawyer’s goal is to achieve the best possible outcome for their client, considering the unique circumstances of the case.

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Additional Resources

Lincoln County Nebraska Man Faces Domestic Assault Charges for Assault of a Pregnant Woman – In Lincoln County, Nebraska, a man was arrested and charged with multiple crimes following allegations of assaulting a pregnant woman and threatening her with a firearm. The accused is facing charges related to both the use of a firearm and domestic violence.

Assault of a Pregnant Victim Laws – The Nebraska Legislature’s official online statutes provide a comprehensive overview of the state’s laws concerning the assault of a pregnant woman. These laws and others detail the potential penalties and the grading of charges.

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Find an Assault Lawyer in Omaha, Nebraska | Liberty Law Group

Our attorneys at Liberty Law Group are ready to defend you.

Our firm proudly serves Omaha in Douglas County, including Lincoln in Lancaster County, Papillion in Sarpy County, Fremont in Dodge County and Council Bluffs in Pottawattamie County, Iowa and the surrounding areas. If you or a loved one has been charged or is under investigation for domestic violence, don’t wait, call our firm immediately at (402) 865-0501 to request a free consultation to discuss the facts of your case.

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