Minnesota Assault Laws

If you have been charged with an assault crime in Minnesota you may be concerned that you could be facing serious prison time. We know the kind of stress this can cause and want to fight for you as you face the Minnesota criminal courts.


Felony assault charges can result in very severe penalties and jail time. And even the least serious 5th degree misdemeanor assault can result in real fines, possible jail time, and a permanent criminal record that can follow you for life.

There may be a perfectly logical explanation to your behavior the night of the incident. You were acting in self defense, or it was a mutual disagreement that escalated. These kinds of sloppy arrests happen all the time, unfortunately. But now you have a complicated criminal legal problem you need to sort out.

Or maybe you made a made a mistake you now regret. We are interested in learning what exactly led up to your charge.

Having successfully defended many assault cases like yours in Minnesota, we know what you are up against. We know the Minnesota criminal courts look down upon violent crimes such as assault and you may already be feeling their scorn.

When you feel like no one is giving you a fair chance, we are here to listen.

We will be the defense lawyers ensuring your rights are protected at every stage of the court process. We can make sure that your side of the story is heard and will fight to get you the positive outcome you are seeking in court.

Minnesota Assault Laws & Penalties

First Degree Assault

If you commit assault that causes great bodily harm to someone you may be charged with this serious felony. First degree assault is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and $30,000 in fines.

“Great bodily harm” is defined as injury which causes substantial risk of death or causes disfigurement or loss or loss of use of any organ or bodily member.

Minnesota Statute §609.224

Second Degree Assault

You may be charged with 2nd degree assault if you assault someone with a dangerous weapon. If the alleged victim suffers “substantial bodily harm” you will face a potential sentence of up to 10 years and fines of $20,000. However, if there is not “substantial bodily harm”, the potential sentence is dropped to up to 7 years in prison and $14,000 in fines.

Minnesota Statute §609.222

Third Degree Assault

There are three ways in which 3rd degree assault can be committed. If you do any of the following you could face this serious felony charge and related sentence:

  • Assault resulting in substantial bodily harm carries a potential sentence of up to 5 years and fines reaching up to $10,000.
  • Assault on a minor where there is a history of abusive behavior can get up 5 years in prison and $10,000 in fines.
  • Assault on a victim under 4 years of age carries a subsequent sentence of 5 years in prison and $10,000 in fines.

Minnesota Statute §609.223

Fourth Degree Assault

You may face 4th degree assault charges if you assault certain people. For instance, assault on a police officer in the line of duty could get you a potential sentence of up to one year in jail and $3,000 in fines. Assaulting a school official, corrections officer, firefighter, or EMT can also land you with a 4th degree assault charge.

If you assault someone because of bias in regards to their religion, race, sexual preference, or disability you could also face gross misdemeanor charges and fines reaching $3,000.

There are certain circumstances that elevate this charge to a felony. Consulting with a qualified attorney will help you assess with certainty the charge and potential sentence you are facing.

Minnesota Statute §609.2231

Fifth Degree Assault

You may be charged with misdemeanor 5th degree assault and face up to 90 days in jail and fines if you  commit an act with intent to cause fear of bodily harm or death or if you intentionally inflict or attempt to inflict bodily harm on another.

There are certain domestic violence situations that elevate this charge to a gross misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail.

Minnesota Statute §609.224

Get Your Free Legal Case Evaluation on an Assault Charge in MN

Facing prison terms and hefty fines can leave you with a lot on your mind. The only way to know for certain what you are facing is to consult with an experienced attorney. Call for a consultation on your assault case today.