Violent crimes are defined as those crimes involving force or the threat of force, or those that involve bodily harm to another. It is not a precisely defined category, and authorities differ precisely on what may or may not be a “violent” crime. Some types of offenses can be in more than one category of crime: for example, aggravated sexual battery is both a sex crime and a violent crime.
Basically, a violent crime is one viewed as violent activity against a person or property that intentionally threatens or inflicts, or attempts to inflict, physical harm. Because of the seriousness of such acts and the potential damages that can result, violent crimes are typically prosecuted very aggressively by state and federal prosecutors. In addition, alleged victims of violent crimes often have more involvement in the prosecution of these offenses than with other types of criminal offenses.
The following are some of the most common violent offenses. Each of these offenses has a very precise definition, with very specific elements, that may vary between the states of Kansas and Missouri. This listing is meant for general informational purposes. Some of these offenses are also commonly found as “inchoate” offenses: that is, they are charged as “attempts” or “conspiracy” to commit the underlying offense.
Homicide. The unlawful killing of a human being, which includes first degree murder, second degree murder, and the three forms of manslaughter.
Robbery. The use of force, or threat of force, in the act of taking money or other property of another. Bank robbery is prosecuted as a federal crime, as it involves federally insured depository institutions. In many robbery situations, arrests are not actually made at the scene of the crime, but are dependent on surveillance videos, eyewitness recollections, and evidence left at the scene. Evidentiary issues in these cases can be complex, and it is important to have an attorney who is aware of the nuances.
Assault. The unlawful and intentional threat of inflicting violence on another.
Battery. The actual and intentional touching or striking of another against their will, or the intentional causing of bodily harm. This can be charged as an “aggravated” offense if certain other conditions are met.
Child Abuse. The infliction of bodily harm on a minor child.
Kidnapping Or Criminal Restraint. Abducting, imprisoning, or confining another against his or her will, by force or threat of force, and without legal authority.
Vehicular Homicide or Manslaughter. Vehicular homicide cases can come about when someone is accused of reckless operation of a motor vehicle that has resulted in the death of another.
Because these charges are aggressively prosecuted and carry serious possible penalties, it is absolutely critical to contact an attorney at the earliest possible stages of the development of a case. Under no circumstances should a person sit for law enforcement interviews, agree to polygraph examinations, or otherwise discuss possible criminal accusations with doctors or social workers, without first consulting a defense attorney.
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