Should my 18 year old son have a lawyer with him when he goes to court for an assault charge?

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Should my 18 year old son have a lawyer with him when he goes to court for an assault charge?

My son started a fight in high school. He threw an air punch and never touched the other guy. However, the other guy threw my son down to the ground hurting his knee. My son then in turn threw him to the ground and the guy hit his head on the concrete spliting it open and requiring 6 staples. My son realized the other was hurt bad and so he walked away. My son was suspended from school. We offered to pay the medical bills. The other family filed charges and my son was served a misdemeanor summons “assault to inflect bodily injury”. The school resource officer said he has seen many cases of high school fights first offenders get thrown out of court. Should we contact a local lawyer for this? The court date is a week away?

Asked on February 21, 2016 under Personal Injury, North Carolina

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Yes, your son should have an attorney with him. Experienced local counsel, who knows not just the law but also this court (e.g. the judge and prosecutor) will greatly increase the odds of a good outcome (dismissal or downgraded charge). Retain an attorney, and in the meantime, you and your son should not discuss this matter with *anyone*, since what is said can be used against him.


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