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Can You Get Arrested for a Bar Fight?

Posted on October 18, 2022 in

After engaging in a bar fight, many people are under the impression that they will be protected under the law because they “did not begin the conflict” or were “in the right.” The reality is that the law in Texas is much more complicated and convoluted, beckoning the need for a competent and aggressive Houston assault attorney. Reach out to the Law Office of David A. Breston today to learn more. 

How to Conduct Oneself Immediately After the Incident

Many moderate to serious bar fights end up in someone getting arrested. Although it is the case that some people put in handcuffs are released by the end of the night as police officers try to de-escalate the situation, some are booked and charged with a crime. 

After initially being arrested, it is often recommended to evade answering any serious questions from the police. The reason for this is that people – especially immediately after a fight in a state of inebriation – are more likely to self-incriminate or say things they otherwise wouldn’t. Tensions can run even higher if someone expects to be let go as they fought in self-defense or tried and failed to escape the fight. 

The Tiers of Severity in Assault Charges

Generally, there are a few specific charges that someone could expect to be hit with after a brawl at the local bar. 

  • Simple assault misdemeanor: Simple assault is generally defined as “knowingly, intentionally, or recklessly causing or threatening to inflict harm to someone else,” but also includes provocation. A simple assault misdemeanor is ranked by class, and penalties increase with class depending on who is injured and the extent of their injuries.  
  • Simple assault felony: A simple assault felony is a more serious charge that permanently shows on someone’s record when applying for a job or opening a bank account, for example. Assaulting a public servant such as a police officer is enough to be charged with a felony, opening an offender up to +$10,000 in fines and decades behind bars.
  • Aggravated assault: Assault in Texas is only classified as aggravated assault if the attack results in serious injury or a weapon is used “in the commission of the assault.” An aggravated assault charge’s starting classification is a second-degree felony. 

Complications Defending Oneself Without an Attorney

While there are many cases in which someone isn’t necessarily responsible for a bar fight, defenses such as self-defense are not always a guarantee that someone will not be arrested and charged. Furthermore, it may be near-impossible to convince authorities upon being arrested that your involvement in the fight was negligible. Whether it be unforgiving public servants or accidental self-incrimination, one of the only ways to increase your chances of dodging an assault charge is with the help of an attorney. 

Reach Out to a Criminal Defense Lawyer Today

Houston assault attorneys at the Law Office of David A. Breston are committed to your success. Our passionate lawyers use their breadth of experience and knowledge to defend what is right and just. Send us a message online or give us a call today at (713) 224-4040 to get a free confidential consultation and learn about your options in regard to defending your assault charges.