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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 27746
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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what is the statute of limitations for assault in missouri.

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what is the statute of limitations for assault in missouri. my mother-in-law attacked me last year during a violent altercation between her son and my daughter. The deputies at that time said I couldn't file, but I have since talked with other deputies who said they couldn't believe how horrible they were to have lied to me like that. It will have been a year in about another week.

No injuries remaining, but I was bruised for a short time. Can't find anything when I google about it.

The criminal statute of limitations on a misdemeanor assault in MIssouri would be one year from the incident. The criminal statute of limitations on a Felony assault in your state would be three years from the incident.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Thank you. Just one more question. I did find descriptions of assault, but they confused me because they talk about injury. Mine was temporary. I was under the impression that you could file even if someone 'gets' in your face. Someone filed against me 20 years ago saying I threatened them with a knife and I was 100 feet away putting knives out on a table for an auction! They served me with 2nd degree felony charges and I had to get an attorney that cost me $500. I never even came near her! And I'm not a professional knife thrower! Ok, enough on that. I'm still bitter that she got by with that even if it didn't go to trial (canceled the day before so all the lawyer expense was mostly already done). She was on my property to boot!


so anyway, I want to file charges so that this at least is on their record. Here's what happened, and you tell me which level it would be. Nasty divorce-wife got home back- went down there to claim it but son-in-law and his mother were there. Violent situation, I called 911. Meanwhile daughter finds drugs in the home (she had been out of the home for 6 months), but hubby grabs it and runs out to destroy it before police get there, I stepped in front of him and he hit me, and I grabbed him. then his mother (300 lbs), tackled me to the floor and I had to hit her to get her off of me. so, that's where it is. I want to file against both of them.


Customer: replied 6 years ago.
She tackled me to allow her son to destroy evidence. Which he successfully did.

Assault is only one possible criminal offense. Threatening with a weapon can make out other offenses even without injury. It's menacing, for example, or brandishing a weapon, or perhaps even an attempted assault.

Every state has its own penal code and every crime is defined there. The penal code makes out the elements (the separate components) of the offense. These differ somewhat from one state to another. The prosecutor is a lawyer and will be able to apply your facts to the elements of the various crimes in your state. But in order to get a conviction, a prosecutor needs to prove every element of the offense beyond a reasonable doubt. Any reasonable doubt and a jury must acquit.

Here is the statute for Assault in the third degree (misdemeanor assault) in Missouri.

Here is the statute for Assault in the Second Degree in Missouri which is a felony. Domestic violence assaults are also felonies.

It is not your job to decide what offense gets charged. That's the job of the prosecutor. Yours would be to report the offense. If the police don't seem much interested (sometimes they are not once enough time has passed for the incident to cool down) in most jurisdictions you can walk in off the street into the prosecutor's office and report the crime to a prosecutor. They can override the police if they think they have a case here. My reading of the domestic assault statute is that you have a potential felony here.

You have nothing to lose by trying to go directly to the prosecutor, The worst thing that will happen is that he will tell you that he thinks you will make out better by dealing with this matter in Family Court in front of the judge who is already handling your divorce. But domestic violence being so much in the public light as they are now, the prosecutor may take the matter on.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Thank you. I didn't brandish a weapon. I simply had knives in my hands laying them out on a table while she was ranting at me from my own porch (I was out in the pasture). Go figure.


On the flip side, the weapon was my mother-in-law. I don't normally say anything about weight as I am about 30 lbs. over, but she came at me full force. I didn't have a chance. Not sure that is a weapon, lol, though!


The deputies had the nerve to say I didn't have the right to be there even though it was now totally my daughter's house for she and their children to lvie in and I was her guest.


Just so you know what backwoods good ol boys deputies these were - they came at another time that I called after my SIL pulled my daughter by her hair out of their car in front of their children after she found a used condom (they were separated) and a coke pipe on the coffee table in reach of the chidlren. They told me that he hadn't done anything they wouldn't have done. WHAT?! What kind of police are we hiring and paying with our tax dollars!


If I file charges, even if it doesn't go anywhere, that will be on his record, right? BTW - there were numerous other domestic violence charges, but as usual, no followup. She went back to him. I did the same thing with her father. Us women are dufoses when it comes to love! We have to get our teeth kicked in before we learn.


I think i may have confused you. My sentence about brandishing a weapon went to your comment about your 20 year old matter -- in some states just holding the knife (even to put it out on a table) while making a threat would make out brandishing or menacing charges. So, yes, sometimes just being in someone else's face is enough to get you charged with a crime if the complainant wants to report it as such. I was not discussing what happened in the more recent incident you would like to have prosecuted.

As to that incident, if the state is willing to file charges, then the two will be arrested or given a citation/summons and become criminal defendants. From there, no matter what happened with the case, the fact that the case was charged will turn up on their records.

If there has been ongoing strife since this incident to the effect that you have real worries that another such incident will occur, you can ask the prosecutor for a protective order to make them keep away while the case is being fought (and, if there's a plea or conviction) for a period of time afterwards.

I've made my mistakes too when it comes to love, but I don't think that we women have a lock on wanting to fool ourselves or on hanging on too long to the wrong person. Love is blind and an equal opportunity employer -- can make fools of all of us at one time or another, regardless of race, gender, color or creed.

Good luck!
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