If somebody who I was trying to evacuate off of my property shoved my girlfriend and I reacted with punching him, am I able to dispute the assault charge?

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If somebody who I was trying to evacuate off of my property shoved my girlfriend and I reacted with punching him, am I able to dispute the assault charge?

Asked on April 28, 2013 under Criminal Law, Wisconsin

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

"Self-defense" includes defending a third party (e.g. your girlfriend). You may have a defense, but it depends on the timing and facts--that is, if he shoved your girlfriend and looked like he was going to continue attacking her, then punching him may have been a valid defense. But if he shoved her once and was clearly done with it, but you got made and decided to punch him a few moments later, that would be assault.


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