Strangulation Accusation in Wyoming: What You Should Know
Wyoming is a tough-on-crime state.
While this applies across the board to all types of criminal offenses, police, prosecutors, and judges take strangulation and other violent crimes especially seriously.
If you face strangulation charges in Wyoming, it is important you have an attorney who takes your case as seriously as you do.
At Cowboy Country Criminal Defense, we fight aggressively to obtain the best possible results for our clients.
Our Wyoming criminal defense lawyers understand the law and how to use it to our client’s advantage.
Like many other states, Wyoming law provides a very specific definition of the term strangulation.
Under Wyoming Statutes § 6-2-509, strangulation is when someone intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly impedes the normal breathing or circulation of blood in one of the following ways:
- Applying pressure to the throat or neck; or
- Blocking the nose and mouth.
However, under § 6-2-509, strangulation is its own crime only when committed against a household member. Wyoming law refers to this crime as a domestic assault by strangulation or strangulation of a household member.
Under Wyoming law, the following people are “household members” for the purposes of a domestic violence strangulation charge:
- People living together as if they were married;
- People who formerly lived together as though they were married;
- People who share a child together, regardless of whether they live together; and
- People who are or ever were involved in a dating relationship.
If you face strangulation charges, an attorney at Cowboy Country Criminal Defense can help you fight the case.
Penalties for a Wyoming Strangulation Conviction
Strangulation is a felony offense. If a judge or jury convicts you of strangulation, you will face a prison sentence of up to 10 years in jail.
In addition, you may be required to pay hundreds or even thousands of dollars in court costs and fines. Some judges will consider lesser sentences such as probation or a short jail sentence.
However, this is up to the judge’s discretion and there is no guarantee, especially for those who have prior convictions for domestic violence offenses.
The strength of your attorney’s advocacy on your behalf can make all the difference in a judge’s final decision.
Crimes Related to Strangulation Offenses
One unique aspect of strangulation charges that isn’t necessarily present with other types of crimes is that these offenses are often charged in conjunction with several other crimes.
Anytime there are allegations of domestic violence, prosecutors have many options in terms of the charges they can bring.
For example, strangulation is often charged along with the following offenses:
- Domestic battery,
- Child abuse,
- Reckless endangerment,
- Felonious restraint,
- False imprisonment, and
- Aggravated assault and battery.
If you face multiple charges, it is even more important you immediately reach out to a dedicated Wyoming criminal defense attorney to protect your interests.
Defenses to Wyoming Strangulation Charges
Just because prosecutors charged you with a strangulation offense does not mean that you will be found guilty. In fact, there is a long road from charges being filed to conviction.
A judge or jury cannot find you guilty unless the government proves its case beyond a reasonable doubt.
Several defenses can apply in strangulation cases. If one of these defenses applies in your case, it may reduce your exposure or result in an acquittal.
Perhaps the most common defense is fabrication. When you argue fabrication, you are essentially claiming that the alleged victim is making up the accusations against you.
Given the fact that most strangulation cases involve people who know each other, interpersonal drama between couples or families may give your accuser motivation to lie.
However, it often takes a skilled criminal defense attorney to expose these lies. If you’ve been falsely accused, strangulation defense lawyers can help you prove that you did not commit the crime.
Another common defense to strangulation charges involves a technical legal argument that—while you may have committed some minor offense by touching the alleged victim—you did not commit strangulation.
For example, you could argue that you did not actually obstruct the alleged victim’s breathing or circulation.
However, this is an incomplete defense in that it still leaves you open to a conviction on a less serious charge like assault.
However, when combined with other defenses, challenging the sufficiency of the government’s evidence can be a very successful strategy.
Reach Out to a Wyoming Strangulation Lawyer for Immediate Assistance
If you face strangulation charges in Wyoming, give Cowboy Country Criminal Defense a call to discuss your case. At Cowboy Country Criminal Defense, we believe that you are better than the crimes you’re accused of.
We understand that facing a criminal case does not mean that you are guilty and certainly does not define who you are.
Our attorneys have a reputation for aggressively defending the rights of our clients at every stage of the process.
To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation with one of our Wyoming criminal defense attorneys, give us a call at 307-333-7884.
You can also reach us through our online contact form. We represent clients in Casper, Cheyenne, Laramie, and throughout Wyoming. We also accept cases in Fort Collins, CO, and Greely, CO.